The federal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit for a civilian motorist is 0.08%. This number is typically generated through roadside breathalyzer tests but it can also be determined through a
blood or urine test in a police station following a
DUI (driving under the influence) arrest. A person who is found to have been driving while their BAC level is over this limit can be charged with a DUI.
For the most part, the 0.08% BAC limit is widely known and people generally do their best to stay under it if they plan on driving later. But did you know that the BAC limit is somewhat flexible? And not to your advantage?
How You Can Be Arrested Without Being Illegally Drunk
A main component of a DUI charge is that you pose a threat to yourself and others due to your intoxication behind the wheel. The BAC limit is really just a benchmark that states when the average person becomes unreasonably dangerous while driving. It is not an end-all, be-all legal requirement for a police officer to make a DUI arrest, though.
If a person's driving behaviors pose a threat to others, and they have any BAC level above 0%, they can be charged with a DUI. This is due to the fact that the unsafe driving can likely be attributed to some extent to the alcohol in their system, even if it is a slight amount. Furthermore, a person's age, sex, genetics, weight, and more can all dramatically affect their overall alcohol tolerance. Someone with a low tolerance could become unreasonably dangerous behind the wheel with a BAC level of only 0.04%, for example, and the police would have the duty to remove them from the road.
Protect Your Rights & Driving Privileges
While the BAC limit may be a bit of a suggestion, it is still important to always stand up for your rights and challenge DUI charges whenever they happen. Allowing the police to freely arrest whomever they want, regardless of their BAC or evidence of intoxication, would be disastrous and likely lead to numerous unjust arrests and convictions.
If you need help standing up for yourself after being arrested for a DUI, the Law Office of Frances Prizzia and our Orange County DUI attorney can come to your aid. Schedule a free consultation today to learn more about our services and experience.