You’ve had a few drinks with your friends, and you can slightly feel the buzz from the alcohol. But your group of friends has very consistent drinking habits, so you certainly don’t feel drunk. Your alcohol tolerance is high enough that you’re just buzzed.
If you were severely intoxicated, you know that it would be unsafe to drive. But can you get behind the wheel if you’re buzzed?
You could still get a DUI
The thing to remember is that the law makes no differentiation between buzzed driving and drunk driving. They’re considered to be the same thing. Either way, you are impaired by alcohol and that can make you a more dangerous driver.
Now, you may argue that your blood alcohol concentration wouldn’t be anywhere close to 0.08%. Maybe it’s just half of that. But remember that you can still get a DUI even if your BAC is under the legal limit. All the police need to see is some level of impairment, and then they can claim that you shouldn’t have been behind the wheel.
This could change your case in some ways. For instance, the police may need to come up with evidence of your impairment because they can no longer use your BAC to assume that you were intoxicated. But that doesn’t mean that they can’t arrest you or that you can’t be charged. Buzzed driving still carries the same risks as drunk driving.
If you did think it was safe to drive and then you ended up getting arrested, you’re likely very concerned about your future. Make sure that you understand all of the criminal defense options at your disposal.