In all states, it is a crime to operate a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs. The specific offense may be called “driving under the influence” (Driving under Influence DUI), “driving while intoxicated” (Driving While Intoxicated, DWI), “operating under the influence” (Operating under the Influence, OUI) and even “operating a vehicle intoxicated motor “(Vehicle Operating Motor Impaired, OMVI). Beyond the name, DUI laws determine that it is illegal to drive a car, truck, motorcycle or commercial vehicle if:
The ability of the person driving the vehicle safely is impaired by the effects of alcohol, illicit drugs, prescription drugs such as analgesics, or counter medications such as antihistamines, or the level of intoxication of the driver exceeds the limits established DUI, as the concentration of alcohol in blood.
- Sobriety tests and chemicals
When a law enforcement officer stops a vehicle because you suspect the driver may be intoxicated, it performs an examination of “sobriety” the driver and may seek your consent to perform some kind of test chemical poisoning.
In general, field sobriety tests are to request the driver to perform a series of tasks to assess any decline in physical or cognitive abilities of the person. Examples of field sobriety tests include: make the driver walk in a straight line heel-to-toe; to recite the alphabet backwards; and use the official examination of “horizontal NY stigmas” (eye and penlight).
Chemical tests can be performed when the vehicle stops, with a Breathalyzer that measures blood alcohol concentration, or in a hospital, with a urinalysis and blood. Many states allow the suspected DUI driver choose which type of test undergo chemical substances.
- Refusing to test chemical: Implied consent laws
All states have laws “implied consent” that require vehicle drivers to undergo some kind of test chemicals, such as the Breathalyzer or blood or urine, if suspected of DUI. The logic behind these laws is that the privilege of driving a vehicle on the streets and roads of a state shows that drivers have consented to test DUI when a police officer believe, reasonably, that the driver is under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
If a driver refuses to submit to such tests, implied consent laws stipulate mandatory punishments such as suspension of driver’s license, usually for a period of six months to a year. Often related sanctions license for refusing to undergo testing are more severe than those imposed for failing a DUI test. In most states, the fact that a driver refuses to submit to a chemical test can be used to intensify the sanctions imposed if it convicted of DUI.
- DUI laws “Per Se” and “Zero Tolerance”
All states have DUI laws they consider “per se intoxicated” to any driver with a blood alcohol concentration above the limit tax (currently 0.08 in all states). This means that drivers with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 or higher are legally intoxicated and more evidence of intoxication are needed.
All states also have laws “zero tolerance” aimed at less than the legal age for drinking drivers. These laws punish persons under 21 years for driving a vehicle with any trace of alcohol in your body (an alcohol concentration greater than 0.0 blood) or with negligible blood alcohol levels, such as 0.01 or 0.02.
Remember that a driver can be arrested and convicted of DUI even without evidence of intoxication “per se” when there is evidence that their capabilities were diminished while driving. For example, you can plead guilty to an offense DUI a driver with a level of alcohol concentration in blood of 0.06 if the arresting officer declares that watched the vehicle veered awkwardly and the driver showed signs of slurred speech and serious lack of attention during the subsequent interrogation to stop the vehicle.
- DUI convictions: Criminal penalties
A DUI conviction may entail penalties such as fines, imprisonment, and probation and community service. Some state laws impose minimum penalties for first offenders, which are aggravated every time reoffend. The severity of the penalties vary depending on the circumstances of the offense, including:
- If the driver has a history of DUI violations;
- If the driver was driving a commercial vehicle when DUI was committed;
- If the DUI offense occurred when a child was in the vehicle;
- If the DUI occurred while another dangerous violation of the law, such as driving recklessly;
- If the DUI offense resulted in an automobile accident that caused property damage;
- If the DUI offense caused a car accident in which there were other injured or killed; Y
- If the driver had not reached the minimum legal drinking age at the time of the violation of DUI.
- See also: a list of certain relevant state DUI penalties.
- DUI Arrest and Conviction: Sanctions on Driving Privileges
In addition to possible sanctions, an arrest or conviction for DUI will have an immediate negative impact on driving privileges.
Most state laws allow motor vehicle departments to immediately suspend the driver’s license of any person who operates a vehicle with an alcohol concentration above the limit of intoxication blood established by the state or any driver who refuses to take the test of blood alcohol concentration.
You can also confiscated the vehicle driver and is likely to DUI offender to pay substantial administrative costs. This loss of privileges may occur even before a conviction for DUI. Most states allows the driver arrested for DUI obtain a provisional license and request an administrative hearing in which to appeal the license suspension or request restoration of certain limited privileges.
As in the case of sanctions, the impact of a DUI arrest or conviction in driving privileges vary according to the history of DUI violations driver and the seriousness of the infringements.
A sanction of increasingly common, especially for repeat offenders, DUI is the mandatory installation of a device “ignition lock” on the vehicle of the offender. This device scans the driver’s breath, measures your blood alcohol concentration and prevents operate the vehicle if the detected level of alcohol is greater than that established by law as a concentration level above 0.02. When this punishment is used, most states require that the DUI offender to pay the costs of installation, rental and maintenance of locking device on. Rental costs are high, sometimes up to three dollars a day, so a DUI offender could expect to pay a lot of money if ordered using an ignition interlock device.