Trial-Tested, Trial-Ready Attorneys

Many different factors can have an effect on a driver’s BAC level

On Behalf of | Jan 2, 2024 | DUI

There are many different factors that can affect how quickly a person’s blood alcohol concentration level rises after consuming an alcoholic beverage.

When a person in Florida consumes an alcoholic beverage, the alcohol is absorbed into the walls of the small intestine and the stomach, states the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. After this occurs, the alcohol makes its way into the bloodstream and then travels to the brain and throughout the rest of the body. A person’s BAC level is the weight of the alcohol in his or her body in relation to a certain volume of blood.

Important factors

There are many different factors that play a role in how quickly a person’s blood alcohol concentration level rises after consuming an alcoholic beverage. According to the NHTSA, these include some of the following:

  • How quickly the alcohol is consumed – when a person drinks alcohol quickly, he or she will reach a higher BAC level than if he or she had consumed the beverage at a slower rate.
  • The person’s weight – water can dilute alcohol in the bloodstream and lower a person’s BAC level. The more a person weighs, the more water will be present in his or her body.
  • The person’s gender – alcohol typically is not able to travel into fat cells as easily as other cells in the body. Since women typically have more body fat per pound and less water in their body, alcohol will remain in the blood of a woman longer than a man.
  • The amount of food in the person’s stomach – if a person has food in his or her stomach while consuming alcohol, the rate at which the alcohol is absorbed into the bloodstream can be slowed.

Although all of these factors can impact how quickly a person’s BAC level rises, the type of beverage consumed does not have an effect on this process. The NHTSA states that most alcoholic beverages contain about half an ounce of alcohol. This is the same amount of alcohol found in one 12-ounce beer, a 5-ounce glass of wine and a shot of distilled spirits.

DUI penalties in Florida

In Florida, according to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, a person can face the severe penalties associated with drunk driving for operating a vehicle with a BAC level at or above 0.08. These consequences can include large fines, community service, jail time and driver’s license revocation.

Drivers who are arrested for DUI in Florida may worry about how a potential conviction could harm their finances and employment prospects. If you were arrested for driving intoxicated, speak with an attorney to determine what legal steps you should take next.

Keywords: drunk driving, BAC, blood test