If you’re preparing to leave a party, and you’re tripping over the furniture or seeing two of everyone, you likely realize that you’re in no condition to drive. If you don’t, and you’re fortunate, someone else will recognize it, take your keys away and order an Uber.
However, many people who say they would never drive drunk have driven while “buzzed.” When a driver has a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .01 to .07, that’s defined as buzzed driving. It can be every bit as dangerous as driving with a BAC over the legal limit of .08.
Researchers at the University of California, San Diego found that buzzed drivers are more likely to cause fatal crashes than those who haven’t been drinking. There’s no question that driving skills decline as the amount of alcohol in a person’s system rises. However, these researchers found that people often don’t realize when they’ve crossed over from being “buzzed” to being drunk by legal standards.
Even if your BAC is under the legal limit, you can still be arrested for drunk driving — and convicted. Law enforcement officers call it a “low blow” — when someone registers less than .08 on a Breathalyzer. If a driver is determined to be too impaired by alcohol and/or drugs to drive safely, they can face DUI charges regardless of their Breathalyzer results.
If you have been charged with DUI after a “low blow,” don’t assume that you have no legal problems. New York law enforcement agencies and prosecutors take impaired driving very seriously. It’s wise to have an experienced attorney on your side.