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Factors that affect blood alcohol content level

There are many different factors that can affect how quickly a person’s blood alcohol content rises after drinking alcohol.

In Maryland, and in all other states in the U.S., it is illegal for drivers to operate a vehicle with a blood alcohol content level at or above 0.08, states the Governors Highway Safety Association. If a law enforcement official suspects a driver is operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol, according to the Maryland Department of Transportation, the official will request that the driver submit to a field sobriety test or a portable breath test.

Factors to know about

Although drivers can be arrested for drunk driving with a BAC level at or above 0.08, there are many factors that can affect how quickly a person’s BAC level rises after consuming alcohol. These include some of the following:

  • Number of drinks consumed – The more drinks a person consumes in a certain period of time, the higher his or her BAC level will be.

  • Weight – Generally speaking, the more a person weighs, the more water will be present in his or her body. Since water dilutes alcohol, a person who weighs more will have a lower BAC level than someone weighing less after consuming the same amount of alcohol.

  • Gender – Women tend to keep more alcohol in their blood than men do since they have more fat and less water than men’s bodies. Therefore, women usually have higher BAC levels since alcohol does not go into fat cells as well as other types of cells.

  • Age – One alcoholic beverage raises the BAC level of an older adult more than the BAC level of a younger one.

Additionally, those who eat something before drinking alcohol will likely have a lower BAC level than those who consumed alcohol on an empty stomach. This occurs because food in the stomach can absorb some alcohol while drinking.

Consequences of drinking and driving

Those who are convicted for DUI in Maryland because their BAC level was 0.08 or higher while driving face serious consequences. For instance, first-time offenders may have to pay a $1,000 fine and spend up to a year in jail. Twelve points may also be added to their driver’s license, and they face license revocation for a period of up to six months.

Those who were arrested for drinking and driving in Maryland may have concerns about how a potential DUI conviction could affect them now and in the future. In this situation, those dealing with a drunk driving charge should contact an attorney in their area for assistance protecting their legal rights.

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