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Quote of the Day - The lion and the calf will lay down together, but the calf won't get much sleep. - Woody Allen

New Law: Driving While Snoring

New Jersey criminalized driving while tired last month. The legislation is dubbed Maggie's law for the 20-year old who was killed by a van driver who admitted to being up for thirty straight hours.

It's the first law of it's kind in the nation. Two other states, Washington and New York, have similar bills pending. There's an attempt to create a federal version of Maggie's law, too.

No, they don't plan on pulling you over if your head is leaning too far forward and then snaps upright. Maggie's law says that the DA has to prove that you've been up for more than 24 hours.

The law, introduced by State Senator George Geist, had 11 co-sponsors. This bill, appears to be the final version. The National Sleep Foundation supported the bill, and is glad to see action being taken. "We are so accustomed to being fatigued and tired and sleepy that it's part of our daily life and we think nothing of getting behind the wheel and driving despite the horrible ramifications of that act," said Marcia Stein of the National Sleep Foundation, a nonprofit research organization.

I can't imagine how the law can be effectively enforced. It's not like there's a version of the field sobriety test for sleeping or drowsiness. How tired do you have to be?

If you keep quiet, how are they ever going to know unless someone else gives you up? It will be a dead giveaway, however, if you put your head down in the police car and start snoring.

It gives a whole new meaning to being arrested.

Posted by J. Craig Williams on Tuesday, September 30, 2003

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