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The importance of knowing your BAC before driving home

On Behalf of | Jun 27, 2024 | DWI |

Sometimes, after having had drinks outside, you might wonder if you are sober enough to drive home. What usually happens is that you feel fine and awake enough to start the car and drive.

It is generally unsafe to be behind the wheel when you have imbibed some alcohol. To prevent trouble with the law and avoid accidents, it is best to know your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) before you drive.

BAC and its importance

Blood alcohol content measures the percentage of alcohol present in your bloodstream after alcohol consumption. A standard drink may increase your BAC somewhere between .02 and .04 points.

As your BAC increases, so do the effects you feel from drinking. Even a slight BAC increase may reduce motor coordination and cloud judgment. You may also feel ill.

Elevated levels of BAC, or those above .15%, may have more extreme effects, which may include:

  • Blackouts
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Vomiting and nausea
  • Impaired vision and speech
  • Increased heart rate

A high BAC can even be fatal. It is also important to note that your BAC can continue to rise even after you stop drinking.

When you have high BAC levels, your memory, coordination, reaction time and balance are all impaired. This makes you prone to physical accidents and injuries. You may also be more likely to be involved in an accident and potentially face driving while intoxicated (DWI) charges. The legal BAC limit in the United States is .08%. The law will consider you intoxicated in every state if your BAC level is above this percentage.

What you can do

DWI charges in Texas can carry significant repercussions, including fines, license suspension and even jail time. It may be best to keep your BAC levels within what is legally acceptable and refrain from driving when you drink. This ensures that you stay safe, do not cause accidents and avoid facing DWI charges.