In Missouri and across the U.S., blood-alcohol content, or BAC, is an important part of being charged for driving under the influence. Depending on the state, a certain BAC will warrant an arrest for DUI. If it is exceedingly high, the charges and penalties will be enhanced.

It is wise to know the facts about BAC when confronted with DUI charges. When a person’s BAC is tested, registering 0.08% while driving will warrant an arrest in Missouri. Still, there are negative effects for any level of alcohol. A person who registers 0.02% will have judgment issues and likely be distracted; at 0.05%, there could be a loss of muscle control, decreased focus and alertness decline; at 0.08%, balance can be a problem, reaction time is diminished, detecting risk is impaired, and the senses are negatively impacted; at 0.10%, it could be difficult to maintain a lane and other problems are exacerbated; and at 0.15%, there could be nausea, sickness, poor balance and a lack of muscle control.

There are various issues that will impact how impaired a person is regardless of the BAC level. Factors such as the person’s hydration level, their digestive abilities, their weight and their tolerance can be influential. There are also different amounts of alcohol in the bloodstream depending on the drink. For example, if the person was drinking beer, it may have a different result than a person consuming hard liquor.

Even if a driver registers 0.08% or higher, it does not necessarily mean that a conviction is guaranteed. There are defense strategies including calling the traffic stop into question, assessing the testing device, checking evidence and looking at the officer’s history of making arrests. There are other ways to combat the charges. Consulting with a law firm experienced in DUI cases may be helpful.