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A major problem associated with abuse of alcohol, of course, is the intoxicated operator of a vehicle in traffic. Now, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in Washington, DC, reports that suspension of operators' licenses by direct administrative action, rather than prolonged court procedures, "is a prompt, effective way to remove driving-while-intoxicated offenders from the road."
The agency cites the state of Minnesota, where a law provides for a 90-day license revocation that can be served directly by the investigating police officer to any driver whose breath test indicates a blood alcohol concentration greater than 0.10 mg/dL. If the driver refuses to let authorities test his or her breath, the license can be suspended for 180 days. (The driver has the right to request a hearing on such suspensions.)
The federal agency says Minnesota's law originally was passed in 1976, then strengthened two years ago. Diane K. Steed, administrator of
Gunby P. 'One for the road' can lead to loss of license for Minnesota drivers. JAMA. 1984;252(14):1837. doi:10.1001/jama.1984.03350140007004