BAC Level is not Based on a Person’s Tolerance to Alcohol

Driving under the influence (DUI) has always been a major concern for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Though considered a serious criminal offense in all 50 states, so many obviously take it lightly, especially those whose age ranges between 17 and 24, the most common offenders of the anti-drunk-driving law.

On the road, drinking and driving is a fatal combination. It does not only put a driver’s life at risk, but also the lives of his/her passengers, pedestrians and other motorists. Thus, in a determined effort to significantly lower the number of road accidents due to drunk driving, the federal government, through the NHTSA, has set the blood alcohol concentration (BAC) to 0.08% (from 0.10% before the 1980s).

In 2013, a move was made by the NHTSA to still lower the BAC level to 0.05%, the legal limit in many countries. This is based on studies by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) which show that a 0.05% BAC level (acquired after consuming 2 – 3 bottles of beer) is enough to lessen a person’s coordination, full ability to respond or react to emergency situations, track moving objects and steer away from road hazards. Though this new limit is still to be signed into law, the NHTSA is positive that it will merit the lawmakers’ approval.

Drivers should understand that the BAC level is not based on a person’s tolerance to alcohol; definitely, some individuals, even after consuming 10 bottles of beer, can remain more sober than others who may have consumed just four bottles. And four bottles is all it takes to get that 0.08% BAC reading.

Part of the government’s serious campaign to catch drunk drivers includes sobriety checkpoints, higher fines and harsher punishments. Those who are caught violating the legal limit are charged with driving while intoxicated (DWI) or DUI, and the punishment in the event of a conviction can include a $200 fine, 1 to 30 days imprisonment and suspension or revocation of driver’s license (harsher punishments are imposed on repeat offenders).

Though no DUI lawyer would ever condone or tolerate the irresponsible acts of drivers who drink and then drive, many lawyers, including the Columbia DUI lawyers, also believe that there are occasions when some individuals have no other choice but to drive, despite having consumed alcohol, due to emergency cases or unavoidable circumstances. At other times, individuals are apprehended and charged despite having a BAC level that is way below the limit set by the government.

It cases such as these, those caught and charged with a DWI or DUI may necessitate the services of a seasoned and determined DUI defense lawyer. Since being charged with a crime can have a lasting negative effect in your life, taking chances with an inexperienced legal counsel may cost you the bright future you have always desired. Thus, entrust your case only to an experienced and skilled DUI defense lawyer.


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