Factors that Influence Blood Alcohol Concentration Levels
One reason a police officer is handcuffing you and reciting your Miranda Rights as he take you in custody is because of your Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) level. BAC is the measure of alcohol found in your bloodstream and this can be extracted for officers to know if you are too intoxicated to drive. Once your BAC hits the limit which is 0.08 then you will most likely be arrested for DUI (Driving under the influence).
However, there will come a time when you are arrested for DUI even if you have managed to monitor your drinks. This is because there are other factors that could have amplified your BAC level and most of these factors are activities you do not realize you are doing.
Las Vegas, particularly the Strip, is filled with hubs for alcohol and illegal drugs and there are certain laws surrounding it. Know that if you do not watch yourself pedantically, your BAC level can betray you.
Read below and see which of the following factors may impact a person’s blood alcohol concentration level!
Factors that influence BAC levels
✓ Body Type
When you are heavier, there are better chances of blood alcohol not completely penetrating your system as people with larger weight have more water in their bodies that helps dilution. Does height affect BAC? We certainly do not think so as weight is still the basis. It does not matter how short you are. If you are heavy, you can have lower BAC.
✓ Alcohol Content
Of course, alcohol will still play a big part in your BAC level. Sometimes, even when you did not take as much, it is the alcohol content of the drinks that increases your concentration level. Before gulping down liquor, if you can, ensure that it does not have a high alcohol content. Nonetheless, moderation is key.
As we age, our hormones, our metabolism, and our tolerance to alcohol changes. If you really have to drink before driving, make sure that you are aware of how much your body can take based on your physical and mental maturity—or else face charges if you get involved in an accident.
This is not a battle of genders but women will generally have higher BAC level because they have higher body fat than men and body fat increases overall effects of alcohol to the body. Women also do not have much as dehydrogenase as men or the enzyme that absorbs alcohol in the system. With this, men will tend to have a lower BAC level than women even if they drink the same amount of alcohol. Still, this is just a common rule and it still varies from person to person.
✓ Style and Amount of Consumption
How fast you drink can also affect your BAC level. Drinking too much in a short period of time will clearly amp up your BAC. Mixing drinks and unusual types of consumption (using keg stands or drinking games) may or also may not affect your BAC level so if you can refrain from these activities especially if you are planning to drive, do so.
Drinking with an empty stomach can escalate your BAC level as food obstructs alcohol content from entering your intestines and eventually your bloodstream.
Your BAC level can also be affected by how high the place you are in. In Las Vegas, specifically the Strip, there are a lot of bars and places to drink situated on high rises. It is a common belief that you get drunk faster at high altitude but this is not necessarily true. The theory is people get drunk easily because limited air lowers the supply of oxygen to your brain, thus the influence of alcohol being dominant but there are no concrete studies to support this.
✓ Medication Intake
When mixed with alcohol, medications like anti-depressants, antibiotics, blood pressure drugs, pain relievers, and more will not only upsurge your BAC levels but will also cause unwanted repercussions to your mind and body.
✓ Emotional State
When you are mentally stressed, your BAC can be transferred to your muscles from your bloodstream and this delays the overall drunkenness of a person. Once relaxed, alcohol can enter the blood freely. Since alcohol is a depressant, it makes people want to drink more, accelerating their BAC levels in the process.
How BAC is measured?
Most police officers that are targeting DUI offenders are equipped with Breathalyzers that they can use to learn of your BAC level. Chemical tests using your blood and urine can also be performed but this is only usually done when there is a dire need for it. Once you are pulled over, an officer will ask you to blow to the Breathalyzer machine. Sobriety tests can also follow to fully support the results of the Breathalyzer test.
BAC limits vary in Nevada. According to the state’s DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles) drivers under 21 years old has to avoid a BAC limit of 0.02% while drivers with commercial license need to make sure they are not exceeding the 0.04% limit. A BAC limit of 0.08% applies for the rest.
It is often believed that you can refuse a Breathalyzer test. You can but not lawfully. Know that when you insist on not taking the test you are violating law and it can cost you a license suspension plus it gives the police more probable cause of arresting you for DUI.
Defenses against faulty BAC measurement
One simple mistake of a police officer could land you to jail in no time. You have the right to contest the results of your BAC tests and show it to court as an evidence that your arrest is unlawful.
With your DUI attorney, you can dispute misconduct done to you. For example:
- You were entrapped (police officers are clearly planning to arrest you from the get go)
- Police officer did not perform the Breathalyzer test properly
- You were improperly stopped by a police officer
- You were intoxicated involuntarily
- You were drunk but driving under duress and necessity
Gather images, video footages, text messages, eyewitness accounts, and other evidence as much as you can to support your claim.
Find a DUI attorney operating in Las Vegas that knows how to handle cases with people being endangered by their BAC levels today!