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Denver Criminal Defense Attorney Discusses Everything You Need to Know About BAC


January 11, 2017

Even if you haven’t been charged with DUI, if you are of the legal drinking age, it’s important to understand what BAC is and how it can be used to put you behind bars. According to Denver criminal defense attorney John Buckley, here’s what you need to know:

What is BAC?

BAC, or blood alcohol content, is the amount of alcohol currently in your blood. You will typically see BAC levels expressed as a percentage, for example, the legal limit is 0.08%.

The Effects of BAC

Your BAC will begin to increase as you continue to drink alcohol, however it may take up to 70 minutes for alcohol to affect your BAC level when you start drinking. As it slowly increases, drinkers tend to feel more confident about themselves and talkative in social situations until they reach about 0.06%. Although alcohol affects everyone differently, from 0.00% to 0.06% is typically known as the euphoric range, where drinkers relax and enjoy a slight buzzed feeling.

However, most people begin to lose this euphoria once their BAC rises above 0.06%. Typically, drinkers who surpass 0.06% will begin to feel the negative effects of alcohol, including extreme fatigue, slurred speech, and overall lack of coordination.

The higher your BAC goes above 0.06%, the more noticeably intoxicated you will become. Drinkers who reach a BAC of 0.15% or above are in danger of blacking out from intoxication, and once you are at 0.25%, you could lose consciousness as a result of your alcohol consumption.

Factors That Impact Your BAC

It’s possible for two people to drink the same amount of alcohol within the same time frame and have completely different BAC levels. Why? A number of factors outside of your alcohol consumption can affect your BAC, including your gender, weight, body fat, and whether you have food in your stomach. Typically, women are more sensitive to alcohol, so their BACs will be higher than a man who has consumed the same amount of alcohol. Learn more about the relationship between weight and gender with BAC.

Calculating BAC

Police officers can test your BAC by administering a breathalyzer test after pulling you over. But, is there a way for you to calculate your BAC by figuring out how much
you’ve had to drink? Unfortunately, no. Of course, there are ways you can estimate what your BAC is by looking at how much you’ve had to drink, but none are reliable. People often buy breathalyzers to test themselves before they get into a vehicle, but even these can be unreliable if you’re not sure what you’re doing or you don’t properly maintain the machine. If you want to steer clear of DUI charges, it’s best to keep off of the roads after you have been drinking instead of trying to guess your BAC.

If you or someone you love is facing DUI charges, you will need legal assistance as soon as possible. The Law Office of John Buckley can assist you with every aspect of your legal case. We work tirelessly to defend your rights and ensure our clients receive the best representation possible. Contact John L. Buckley today to schedule a legal consultation.