How Alcohol Affects Your Body And Florida DUI Cases
Motorists are well-aware that Florida drunk driving laws are tough, but you may not fully understand the reasons for such harsh treatment. Put simply, officials discovered decades ago that consuming high amounts of alcohol can have extreme effects on the human body. A driver becomes dangerous to others after a few drinks, so Florida’s statute on driving under the influence (DUI) imposes a legal limit: If a chemical test of your breath, blood, or urine reveals a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level in excess of .08 percent, you could be charged with drunk driving.
However, Florida law also gives police authority to arrest you for DUI if your normal faculties are impaired. This evaluation is more subjective and relies on the impressions and observations of police officers during the encounter. Drunk driving cases based upon impairment are complicated and require a specific defense strategy, so working with a Fort Lauderdale DUI defense lawyer is wise. Understanding the impacts of alcohol may also clarify how you could be arrested even without BAC evidence.
What BAC Means for Your Body
In general, you know that your BAC will be higher the more alcohol you consume, but there are very specific things happening in your body. After one drink, you will feel warm and relaxed, and you might start to experience blurred vision. The impacts of alcohol increase as you drink more, and they affect people differently. However, as alcohol consumption pertains to BAC:
- At .05 percent, you might not be able to focus on objects or have complete control over muscle movement. Reaction time is longer, so you may not react in time to avoid an accident.
- When at the legal limit of .08 percent, a motorist may not detect dangers or sense that they are a threat. Judgment, motor skills, balance, and muscles further deteriorate.
- Numerous drinks could put a driver at .15 percent BAC or higher, at which point he or she has limited control and capacity. Eyes appear bloodshot, speech is slurred, and a person will not be able to walk.
Florida DUI Penalties and Defenses
The punishment for a drunk driving conviction does not change based on whether the case was DUI impairment or DUI per se, i.e., a BAC over the legal limit. You still face up to six months in jail, a fine ranging from $500 to $1,500, and a driver’s license suspension.
What may change with an impairment DUI is your defense strategy, since you will not be fighting the results of a chemical test. Instead, you must contest the impressions of police officers who will be testifying on what led them to believe you were intoxicated.
Consult with a South Florida DUI Defense Attorney About Your Rights
If you were arrested for drunk driving based upon impairment, retaining experienced legal counsel is critical to defending the charges. To learn how our team can help with a Florida DUI case, please call 954-761-9411 or go online to schedule a consultation with attorney Kevin J. Kulik today.