Drunk Driving

Just How Many Bottles of Beer can Get One Impaired?

In his book entitled, “One for the Road,” which looks into the roots of drunk driving, Barron H. Lerner, MD, PhD, says that Americans’ love for drinking and driving are both embedded in the nation’s culture. This may probably be the reason why many Americans still drive while under the influence, despite the risk of a DUI or DWI charge that is accompanied by heavy fines and imprisonment.

Driving under the influence (DUI) or driving while intoxicated (DWI) is a serious criminal charge, whether the charge is a misdemeanor (for first time offenders and without causing any property damage or physical injury) or a felony (imputed on repeat offenders, or first time offenders whose blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level is way above the 0.08% limit or who injures/kills someone in an accident) .

Based on a blood alcohol concentration measurement chart released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the following number of beer bottles would result to the following BAC levels:

  • 2 bottles of beer = 0.02% BAC
  • 3 bottles of beer = 0.05% BAC
  • 4 bottles of beer = 0.08% BAC – the BAC limit in all US states
  • 5 bottles of beer = 0.10% BAC
  • 7 bottles of beer = 0.15% BAC

Based on CDC records, more than 1.4 million drivers were arrested in 2010 for driving under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs; the number of deaths due to alcohol- impairment was 10,322 in 2012 and 10,076 in 2013.

For many Americans, a few bottles of beer with friends or colleagues or a shot of 80-proof liquor (vodka, gin, whiskey, rum), especially during weekends, would definitely not hurt; rightly so, but only if they do not drive afterwards. Most of those who had been charged with DUI are first offenders who have never even supposed that the amount of alcohol they consumed would impair their driving and lead them into an accident that would injure someone and damage properties. Worse, there have even been cases wherein multiple deaths have resulted, simply because someone chose not to observe the anti-drunk driving law.

Injuries will definitely make victims and their families suffer physically, emotionally and financially. Due to this, courts allow them to receive compensation from the liable negligent party that caused the accident and the injury.

According to the website of the Abel Law Firm, receiving this kind of compensation can be a long, complicated process. The court will first have to be convinced that the person being blamed for the accident was truly at fault and behaved negligently.

Read More