blog DUI Report: Half of Drinkers Risk DUI

Report: Half of Drinkers Risk DUI

By Colorado Attorney-at-law on January 10, 2022

Enjoying a pleasant dinner out, a get together at a local bar or club, or a meeting with friends often involves consuming alcohol. Even if you are careful about how much you drink, a recent study reveals that almost half of drinkers underestimate their BAC (blood alcohol concentration), believe they are safe to drive, but are at risk of being charged with DUI.

Think You are Safe to Drive? Think Again.

Ninety students with an average age of 24 participated in an experiment, taking place on two days. The study participants were divided into two groups, one for study, and one as a control group. The participants were provided with beer or wine until they reached a peak of .11% BAC. The legal limit in Colorado is .08%. The study subjects were monitored with breathalyzers, and with each test, were asked what they believed the BAC to be, and when they felt they had surpassed the legal limit.

In the first study day, 39% of the study subjects, when they thought they were finally above the legal limit, had surpassed it earlier. On the second day of the study, the percentage increased to 59%. The study shows that about half of the people who believe they are safe to operate a vehicle are already above the limit.

Alcohol and the Ability to Drive

Alcohol affects all the body systems, leading to impaired motor function. The more alcohol you consume, the greater the impact on your reaction time, your ability to operate the vehicle safely, and the more likely you are to take risks while behind the wheel. The study also discovered that the more alcohol is consumed, the less the study subject could correctly estimate their BAC level. A person may wrongly believe they are under the limit, and safe to drive. Law enforcement watches for specific types of driving behavior to identify drunk drivers, such as driving too slowly, too fast, swerving, or driving recklessly to stop and test for DUI.

Devastating Consequences

Dr. Kai Hensel, who led the study, had these words to say about the study results:

In countries with legal alcohol limits, it’s usually the driver who makes a judgment about how much they’ve drunk and how fit they are to drive. But as we’ve shown, we are not always good at making this judgment. As many as one in two people in our study underestimated how drunk they were — and this can have devastating consequences.” Dr. Hensel also had this advice:

Really, the best advice is that if you’re driving, just don’t drink. But if you really do feel like a drink, then look into your own alcohol tolerance. This differs from one person to the next, depending on your sex, weight and age, and there are some reliable apps out there that can help guide you.”

DUI in Colorado: No Joking Matter.

Colorado lawmakers are committed to reducing the numbers of accidents, injuries, and deaths on the streets, roads, and highways in the state. The penalties imposed for DUI are tough and can have a long-term impact on your criminal record, along with your personal and professional reputation. The penalties for a first and second DUI include:

  • 1st DUI: Jail time up to 1 year, fines from $600 to $1,000, community service from 48 to 96 hours.
  • 2nd DUI: Jail time up to 2 years, 10 days consecutive mandatory, probation for 2 to 4 years, fines up to $1,500, community service for up to 120 hours.

Charged With DUI? You Need a DUI Defense Attorney – Now.

After being arrested and charged with DUI, your first action should be to ensure you have legal representation from an experienced DUI defense attorney. At Whitaker & Penix, LLC, our legal team includes a lawyer with 7 years of experience as a criminal prosecutor and former assistant DA in Breckenridge courts, with an in-depth understanding of criminal defense, and a criminal lawyer with 3 years of experience serving as a criminal prosecutor. We have more trial experience than many criminal attorneys, and we know our way around a courtroom – and how to defend a DUI charge, or reduce the damage to your life, future, and ability to legally drive.

Call us today at (970) 368-0602 for a free case consultation.

Posted in: DUI