BAC Levels and DUI

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How do you know if you are "drunk" in the legal sense of the term?  It is vital to understand what the state deems as "under the influence," as opposed to what you may feel, yourself. The effects of alcohol can vary from person to person. Here, you will find a detailed list of BAC (blood alcohol content) levels and what they mean to you.  As a note, all states currently have DUI Per Se laws set at a BAC of .08. However, you can be arrested for lower levels of alcohol in your body.  

0.02 — 0.03 BAC:  

This is the result of one drink, though two drinks are required for those over 190 lbs.  This level of intoxication finds minor loss of coordination or motor skills and a very slight feeling of euphoria.  You may be considered drunk at this level, depending on your actions.

0.04 — 0.06 BAC:  

This is the result of 2 drinks on those under 190 lbs. Those over 190 lbs will require 3 – 4 drinks to reach this level.  This BAC level is usually referred to as "buzzed."  You experience a feeling of happiness and freedom from inhibitions, as well as minor impairment of memory and mental function. 

0.07 — 0.09 BAC:  

This level is reached for all drinkers after 4 – 5 drinks.  In addition, .07 can technically be considered DUI, but anything over this is a direct violation of the law in all states in the US.  This level of intoxication finds impairment in speech, motor skills, mental judgment and self-control.

0.10 — 0.125 BAC:

This level of intoxication finds slurred speech and poor motor control.  Operating a vehicle at this level is dangerous and illegal.  

0.13 — 0.15 BAC:  

This is the beginning of what most people term "drunkenness."  Physical control begins to erode completely and the feeling of euphoria is gone, replaced by depression, anxiety and even anger.

0.16 — 0.19 BAC:

At this point, most drinkers begin to feel incapacitated.  Nausea begins to set in and the drinker has difficulty focusing on any object.

Beyond .19 BAC, the symptoms rapidly become worse.  Vomiting, coma and eventual death can result.  By knowing your current BAC level, police officers can calculate what the level was at the time of arrest.  This is a significant factor in the outcome of your DUI trial.  However, an experienced attorney can exploit the obvious flaws of this testing method and help you avoid severe punishment.

Of course, the best defense is to avoid drinking and driving at all.  However, with the obviously strict legal definition of "drunk" driving, many drivers have no idea that they are considered "drunk" in the eyes of the law.  Know your symptoms and you can make a better choice about driving or calling that cab, after all.

If you or someone you love has been charge with a DUI, it is important to consult with a DUI Lawyer to discuss the options you have for defense.
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