While driving on West Virginia roads, you may occasionally be stopped by a police officer. If the officer suspects you of drinking and driving, he or she may ask you to take a Breathalyzer test. If it shows that your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is high, you may have some questions.
What can determine a person’s BAC?
In some cases, if your BAC is high, it doesn’t always indicate that you have been driving under the influence, or DUI. Certain factors determine your BAC level, including when it exceeds the legal limit of 0.08%.
Your BAC is measured by 100 millimeters of blood or 210 liters of breath and can be determined through blood, breath or urine tests. You cannot simply determine it based on the number of alcoholic beverages a person consumes due to varying levels of tolerance, body composition and weight.
What specific factors can determine a person’s BAC?
Four main factors can determine an individual’s BAC. A person’s body weight, the size of the drink, the rate at which they drink and the rate of absorption all factor into what his or her BAC level may be and whether it’s under, at or over the legal limit. However, overall, the faster someone consumes alcohol, the faster it’s absorbed in the bloodstream. In other words, if a person drinks even fewer alcoholic beverages faster, in a shorter period of time, he or she can become intoxicated and end up committing a DUI if he or she gets behind the wheel.
Some additional factors can come into play when determining a person’s BAC. Whether the individual has food in his or her stomach and even his or her gender can affect BAC. In general, a woman may have a higher BAC than a man when both have consumed the same type and number of drinks. This is because women are typically smaller in size and weight than men. There may be some exceptions when there’s a notable height or weight difference that favors the woman.
Overall, however, it’s important to remember that a person’s BAC may vary depending on numerous factors. You can keep your BAC lower while drinking if you sip slowly and eat food while you drink. Having a full stomach before drinking can also help.