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Utah troopers see early success with new .05% DUI law

The Unified Police Department conducts an Administrative DUI checkpoint in Salt Lake City. (PHOTO: File)

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Recent figures suggest that the Utah Highway Patrol is seeing early success under a new state law that dropped the blood alcohol limit from .08% to .05%, the lowest threshold in the nation.

The Deseret News reported Tuesday that Utah troopers say there were 134 alcohol-related crashes in January resulting in 59 injuries and one death, the lowest number in at least four years.

There were 150 alcohol-related crashes in January last year resulting in 84 injuries and two deaths.

Although the force believes it’s too early to definitively determine how much of an impact the new law is having, Utah Highway Patrol Sgt. Nick Street says he’s encouraged by the apparent early success.

Street says only January statistics are currently available because toxicology tests can take an average of eight weeks to complete.