Everyone has different tolerance levels and all too often drivers are charged with being intoxicated behind the wheel when they felt completely fine. Unfortunately, the law does not care for how competent you believe yourself to be at that moment, but only the amount of alcohol in your bloodstream. In Arizona, as is the case throughout the U.S. the legal limit for blood alcohol concentration is 0.08 percent.
As we saw in a previous post, the rules are even stricter for commercial drivers, with the limit being set at 0.04 percent. If your BAC is found to be at or above the limit, you could be charged with driving under the influence. This in turn can lead to fines, jail time and even suspension of your driver’s license. A BAC of 0.15 to 0.199 can carry even heftier penalties, as this falls into the category of extreme DUI.
If you are stopped on suspicion of drunk driving, your BAC may be tested in a number of ways. Often, officers will ask you to submit to a breath test. Although you are not obliged to comply, refusing can have negative consequences such as the suspension of your license. Another method that is sometimes used is a blood draw. This is more common if the person being tested is unable to comply with a breath test, for example if they are unconscious.
Our page on DUI charges has further information on blood alcohol tests and what you can do if you are charged. An attorney may be invaluable in this situation as he or she can help you to understand the allegations you face and may be able to assist you in forming your defense.