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Blood alcohol concentration levels are important in DUI cases

When you are stopped for drunk driving, you might be asked to submit to tests to determine your blood alcohol concentration level. This is an important test because it determines if you are at or above the legal limit for BAC, which is .08 percent. If your BAC is at or above that level, you can face criminal charges for drunk driving.

Generally, you will reach a BAC of .08 percent when you have had around four standard size alcoholic beverages in about an hour. One standard drink is the equivalent of a 12-ounce can of beer, 5 ounces of wine, 8 ounces of malt liquor or a 1.5-ounce shot of alcohol. These estimates are based on a 160-pound man.

By the time you hit the .08 percent BAC limit, you are likely to have trouble controlling your driving. You might have poor coordination, self control and judgment. You might have trouble processing information, such as traffic signals and signs. You might have short-term memory loss and find it difficult to control your speed. Difficulty steering is something that is already possible by the time you hit .05 percent BAC, so by that is likely increased by the time you are at .08 percent.

If you are stopped for suspicion of drunk driving, the officer had to have a reasonable suspicion to stop you. In some cases, your driving methods might be the reason. It is vital that you determine the reason for the stop so that you can determine if you were stopped lawfully. That information, as well as other information pertaining to your case, can impact your defense strategy options.

Source: United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "Effects of Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC)," accessed Dec. 10, 2015

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