Louisiana is a state known for its celebrations. Whether it is Christmas, New Year’s Eve or Mardi Gras, people will toast to the season with a drink and a cheer.
However, it is important that those who choose to drink this time of year do so responsibly. This is because if a person’s blood alcohol concentration is at 0.08 or above, that person could be charged with drunk driving. Having a BAC that high can be dangerous, as it can affect a person’s ability to concentrate. It can also cause short-term memory loss and make it difficult for the driver to maintain the proper speed. In addition, a person’s ability to process information is compromised when their BAC is that high, and their perception may be impaired.
Of course, police will be extra vigilant this time of year, looking out for those they believe are drunk driving. For this reason, they may end up pulling a driver over on suspicion of drunk driving, even if it turns out that the driver’s BAC is below the legal limit. A driver might be asked to perform field sobriety tests, which they may not be able to pass properly even if they are sober. This could give the impression that they are drunk, when in fact they are not.
Even if a person’s BAC is above the legal limit, that person may still have defenses at their disposal. They can argue that the field sobriety tests were subjective, that the breath test was improperly administered or that the breath test instrument was not properly calibrated. Depending on the circumstances they may even be able to call into question the legality of the traffic stop itself.
As this shows, while people should be careful when drinking, if they are accused of drunk driving it does not mean an automatic conviction. A person facing drunk driving charges is afforded due process, just like a person charged with any other crime. However, it may be wise to seek the assistance of an attorney when fighting drunk driving charges, to ensure one’s rights and interests are upheld.