In the city of Miami – and the entire state of Florida – there are limits to the amount of alcohol you can consume before driving a vehicle. The legal blood-alcohol content, or BAC, is under .08%. If your BAC is .08% or above that limit, you are considered legally impaired and will face charges if you are found operating a vehicle.
BAC: What it is and Why it’s Important
What exactly is a BAC and why is so important?
According to Miami criminal lawyers, blood alcohol content (BAC) indicates how much alcohol is in an individual’s body. When alcohol is consumed, it is absorbed into the lining of the stomach and the small intestine, and eventually, it is absorbed into a person’s bloodstream. Blood alcohol content indicates the percentage of alcohol that is in a person’s bloodstream.
BAC is important to prosecutors because they believe it reflects how much an individual is impaired by alcohol. They also believe this impairment directly impacts a person’s ability to properly and safely operate a motor vehicle. It is commonly believed that when BAC reaches a level of .08% or higher, an individual has reached a level of impairment where it is unsafe to drive.
Our Miami criminal lawyers offer the following information regarding the impairments of BAC levels. This information was compiled from a study conducted by Virginia Tech:
- .001 to .029 – The effects of alcohol are subtle
- .030 – .059 – Concentration becomes impaired
- .060 to .099 – Depth perception, peripheral vision, reasoning and glare recovery become impaired
- .100 to .199 – Reflexes, gross motor skills, reaction time and speech become impaired
- .200 – .299 – Motor skills become severely impaired, and loss of consciousness and memory may occur
- .300 or higher – Impaired breathing and slowed breathing can occur; death is a possibility
How can you Find Out Your BAC Level?
Because you are deemed legally intoxicated to operate a motor vehicle once your BAC level reaches .08%, knowing what your BAC level is before you drive is extremely important. The only definitive way to tell your BAC is with a breathalyzer or a blood test, so how can you find out what your level is before you drive? Here are some tips from our criminal lawyer in Miami:
- Use a BAC calculator. There are many factors that can impact your BAC level, but looking at the two main factors, it comes down to your body weight and the amount of alcohol that you consumed. You can locate BAC calculators online. You will be asked to input your weight and the amount of alcohol that you have consumed. On average, a 180 pound man who has 3 drinks will have a BAC of about .06% and a 120 pound woman who has 2 drinks will have a BAC of .08%. The information obtained from a BAC calculator is not a definitive indicator.
- Understand the signs that indicate you are too intoxicated. If you are slurring your speech, have slowed movements or are becoming lethargic, you should never get behind the wheel of a car.
- If you feel that you have had too much to drink, wait to drive or rely on a designated driver
What Should You do if You have Been Charged with a DUI/DWI?
Contact Miami criminal lawyers as soon as you possibly can. Our criminal lawyers in Miami have helped countless people who have been charged with DUI/DWI and will assist you to the fullest extent of the law.
When it comes to drinking and driving, it’s far better to wait than to risk being arrested. In the event that you do find yourself in legal trouble, a criminal lawyer in Miami may be able to help you.
We handle a variety of criminal law cases, so call us now if you have any questions.
View more contact information here: Miami Criminal Lawyers.