Can You Get a DUI after One Drink?
Whether it’s the weekend, a party, or a corporate dinner, there are plenty of occasions to drink. Nothing says “celebration” like a glass of champagne or two. Driving afterwards is another story entirely, though. Drinking and driving can impair your judgment and puts you at a higher risk of getting in an accident. In fact, MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) estimate that 27 people die as a result of drunk drivers every day in the United States. Even if you don’t hurt yourself or someone else, getting behind the wheel after drinking could land you in jail. If you are pulled over after drinking, the officer could arrest you on DUI charges. Can you really get a DUI after just one drink, though?
What Is a BAC?
In Texas, if you are 21 years of age or older and have a blood alcohol content (BAC) of over .08, you can get a DUI. If you are under 21, the legal limit is .02. However, it’s important to understand that alcohol hits peoples’ systems differently. A lot of it depends on weight. For example, after 2 shots of 1.5 oz. of hard liquor, someone who weighs 120 lbs. will have a BAC of around .054. Someone who weighs 160 lbs. though, will have a BAC of around .040. So, depending on the type of alcohol, the amount that you drink, and your body chemistry, it could take you much longer to reach that legal level than someone else.
How Many Drinks Does It Take to Become Legally Drunk?
This is the wrong question to be asking. There are so many different variables that can impact the inebriation of any one person. Medications, weight, and predisposition can all play factors. Plus, while you might be under the legal limit for a DUI, you can still be charged with impaired driving. It’s best to play it safe and designate a driver to take you home after drinking.
What If I Do Get a DUI?
If you are pulled over and asked to take a chemical test, it’s in your best interest to comply. A refusal to take a test can result in a 180-day license suspension. Following your charge, your consequences will depend on how many previous offenses you have. If this is your first DUI, your minimum jail time could be anywhere from 3 to 180 days. If it’s your second or third offense, it could be 30 days to 2 years. In the event that you are charged with a DUI, it’s time to get serious. Call an attorney as soon as possible to handle your case. With proper representation, you have the best chance at winning your case or getting a lesser sentence.
So, can you get a DUI after one drink? The answer is: it depends! As was explained earlier, a DUI is given based on your blood alcohol content level. Your BAC might be different than someone else’s. The best way to avoid a Houston DUI arrest is by not drinking and driving. With such strict laws in Texas, it’s best to avoid the situation altogether. Take a cab, call a friend, or designate a driver, but whatever you do, don’t drive drunk!