In Pennsylvania and across the country, many people are getting ready to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. Even in the workplace, this holiday often sparks festivities, from dressing in green from head-to-toe to decorations of shamrocks, pots of gold and lots of green glitter. After work, it is not uncommon for friends to gather in a local Irish pub or host a party where everything from green finger foods to alcoholic beverages are served. Imbibing in the latter, however, could wind up landing a partygoer in jail for suspected DUI if he or she drives home.
Pennsylvania laws are similar to numerous other states regarding blood alcohol concentration (BAC) levels. If a driver’s BAC registers at .08 or higher, he or she is legally prohibited from operating a motor vehicle. To stay safe and avoid a DUI arrest after a St. Patrick’s Day party, it’s good to keep a few things in mind.
How a person feels does not always coincide with BAC
Of course, quite a few drivers have been in a motor vehicle accident only to be charged with drunk driving as a result. Many a driver has later said that he or she “felt perfectly fine” and didn’t think driving would be a problem. The only way to know exactly what one’s BAC level is at any given moment is to take a blood, breath, urine or saliva test.
Alcohol affects everyone differently
A person’s BAC might be within legal limits for driving, yet he or she could still show signs of impairment. If a police officer administers a field sobriety test, and the person taking the test fails, it constitutes probable cause for making a DUI arrest. If St. Patrick’s Day fun is brought to a screeching halt by being taken into police custody for suspected drunk driving, it’s best to speak with a criminal defense attorney before making any statement to police.