In 2016, 111 million people reported driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. However, only 1 million people were taken into custody for impaired driving in Minnesota and throughout the country. When a person drinks alcohol, it can have a variety of effects on his or her ability to drive safely. For instance, after only one or two drinks, there is a slight loss of judgment. There may also be a decline in the ability to multitask or process information visually.
When a person has a blood alcohol content of about .05 percent, he or she may start to lose his or her inhibitions. It may also be harder to steer or react to emergency situations on the road. Generally speaking, it is a crime to drive with a blood alcohol content greater than .08 percent. At this point, it may be difficult for a driver to maintain a proper lane or speak without slurring his or her words.
When a person's blood alcohol content reaches .15 percent or higher, it may be impossible for him or her to stand up straight. Depending on a person's tolerance, he or she may feel sick or start to vomit. It is also common for an individual to have significantly reduced muscle control. This could result in an inability to remain in control of a vehicle or process information needed to do so safely.
Those who operate a motor vehicle after consuming alcohol may be at risk of being charged with DUI. Penalties for a DUI conviction could include jail time, a fine or a license suspension. Other penalties may apply if an impaired driver causes property damage or bodily injury in an accident. An attorney may be able to help a driver avoid some or all of these consequences. This may be done by casting doubt on blood or Breathalyzer tests.