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What Is the Legal Blood Alcohol Concentration Limit for Driving in New York?

Many people make the assumption that as long as they don’t meet the legal blood alcohol concentration level, they are free to drive without consequences. However, drivers below the legal limit can still be ability impaired, leading to accidents and injuries. Understanding what blood alcohol concentration is and the laws surrounding it are essential. Keep reading to learn what it is and how a Spring Valley DWI defense attorney can help you if you’re facing criminal charges for allegedly driving with an illegal BAC level.

What Is Blood Alcohol Concentration, and How Is It Measured?

Blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is measured to tell how much alcohol someone has consumed and absorbed into the bloodstream. It is measured in grams per 100 mL of blood, meaning that the percentage represents how much alcohol by volume your blood is.

Generally, officers who believe someone is driving under the influence of alcohol will use a device called a breathalyzer to measure the amount of alcohol in someone’s system. The machine will react with a solution in the device to convert the amount of alcohol on someone’s breath to determine the BAC. In some instances, officers may collect a blood or urine sample and run tests to determine the blood alcohol solution of a driver.

Is There a Difference Between Between Drunk Driving Charges?

Many people use the terms DWI and DUI interchangeably. However, in New York, DUI is not a valid legal term. The comparable term is DWAI, which differs greatly from a DWI.

A DWI, or driving while intoxicated, is more severe than a DWAI, or driving while ability impaired. In New York, a DWI means that someone is legally intoxicated. In New York, the legal limit is 0.08%, which means those at or over this limit will be charged with a DWI if they are charged. However, if you are below the legal limit and an officer has reason to believe that you are impaired, you can be charged with a DWAI. The minute you consume alcohol, it begins to impair your ability to drive and blowing even a 0.02% on a breathalyzer test is enough to leave you with a DWAI if an officer believes you are inhibited by alcohol.

What Should I Do if I’m Facing Charges?

If you are facing DWI or DWAI charges, ensuring you contact an attorney as soon as possible is vital to protecting yourself and avoiding charges. Though a DWI charge may seem impossible to avoid, a seasoned attorney can help explore every possible defense. For example, the breathalyzer device may not be calibrated correctly, producing a BAC reading that is higher than it actually is.

The Law Office of Kevin T. Conway is dedicated to helping you navigate these charges. Our legal team will do everything possible to help you achieve the best possible outcome for your circumstances. Contact us today to learn how we can help you.

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