While people who drive likely know that operating a vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 percent or higher is illegal, motorists in Pennsylvania and other states sometimes feel like they have not had too much to drink or that they are not affected by the alcohol they have consumed. However, even one alcoholic drink can result in side effects and hurt one's driving ability. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has provided some information about alcohol consumption and driving.
The amount of alcohol it takes for an individual to reach the BAC limit depends on things like the kind and number of drinks consumed, one's height and weight and more. Drinking two alcoholic beverages in roughly an hour may give one a BAC of around .02 percent. While this is still within the legal limit, one could experience an altered mood and some loss of judgment. This can result in impaired visual functions and multitasking abilities when driving.
Driving with a BAC of .05 percent may result in difficulty steering, less coordination and a lengthier response time. When one hits .08 percent, muscle coordination is poor, reasoning and self-control are impaired and it is harder to identify danger. This can lead to short-term memory loss, trouble processing information and difficulty controlling a vehicle's speed while one is driving.
While it could happen at any time, authorities may suspect drinking and driving when accidents take place late at night, on weekends or around certain holidays. If the police at a crash site notice signs of inebriation like bloodshot eyes or the smell of liquor or see alcoholic beverages in a vehicle, they may perform blood or breath tests. The resulting information gets noted in a police report, and those who suffered injuries in such an accident could use this evidence when seeking damages from the impaired driver in a personal injury lawsuit filed with the assistance of an attorney.