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Factors that Affect Blood Alcohol Concentration

If you are pulled over and the police suspect that you might be driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI), they will likely test your breath (using a Breathalyzer) or blood to determine your blood alcohol content (BAC). In Florida, you are presumed to be impaired by alcohol if you are driving and have a BAC above .08.

The rule of thumb is that it takes about one hour to metabolize each drink, and each drink may increase BAC by .02, although this can be affected by a number of factors. For these scenarios, a “drink” is a regular 12-ounce beer, a five-ounce glass of wine, or a one and a half ounce shot of hard liquor (generally 80-100 proof). Of course, some types of liquor may have a much higher alcohol content, which will greatly impact the level of an individual’s BAC. While there are BAC calculators that you can access online, it is impossible to know for sure without a blood test. However, there are many factors that can affect BAC, including some that may act as a defense for DUI.

Traits that Affect BAC

There are many traits specific to each individual that will affect BAC. One of the major affecting factors is weight. The more that someone weighs, the less effect each drink will have on his or her BAC. Gender may also be a factor, although it’s impossible to say exactly how an individual will respond to alcohol beforehand. Metabolism is also a factor, along with a number of others.

Medications that Affect BAC

BAC is also affected by some medications. For example, many medications could combine with alcohol to make someone more intoxicated, which may or may not show up in BAC, but can be used as a factor in a DUI arrest.

BAC Based Defenses to DUI

Challenging the BAC of someone charged with DUI is a common defense. One way the prosecution can attempt to convict someone for DUI, show the BAC was above the legal limit. One defense to this proof is that the blood or breath test was faulty in some way. A knowledgeable defense attorney may claim that the blood sample was not handled properly, the testing device malfunctioned, was not calibrated correctly, or that another kind of flaw makes the test results unreliable.

Another common DUI related defense is a “rising DUI defense.” The crux of this defense is that while the person was driving his or her BAC was under the legal limit, but that the body absorbed more alcohol and the BAC rose by the time that testing was done.

Let Us Assist You with Your Case

If you are arrested for a DUI there are many defenses that skilled DUI defense attorneys can use to defend you, including defenses related to inaccurate BAC testing. Our experienced DUI defense attorneys at Roman & Roman in Clearwater, Florida can defend you against your DUI charge.

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