A: The amount of alcohol in a person’s body is measured by the weight of the alcohol in a certain volume of blood. This is called the blood alcohol concentration, or “BAC.”
Alcohol is absorbed directly through the walls of the stomach and the small intestine, goes into the bloodstream, and travels throughout the body and to the brain.
Alcohol is quickly absorbed and can be measured within 30 to 70 minutes after a person has had a drink.
A: No! A drink is a drink, is a drink.
A typical drink equals about half an ounce of alcohol (.54 ounces, to be exact). This is the approximate amount of alcohol found in:
A: How fast a person’s BAC rises varies with a number of factors:
A: Medications or drugs will not change your BAC. However, if you drink alcohol while taking certain medications, you may feel – and be – more impaired, which can affect your ability to perform driving-related tasks.
A: Because of the multitude of factors that affect BAC, it is very difficult to assess your own BAC or impairment. Though small amounts of alcohol affect one’s brain and the ability to drive, people often swear they are “fine” after several drinks – but in fact, the failure to recognize alcohol impairment is often a symptom of impairment.
While the lower stages of alcohol impairment are undetectable to others, the drinker knows vaguely when the “buzz” begins. A person will likely be too impaired to drive before looking – or maybe even feeling – “drunk.”
A: Alcohol steadily decreases a person’s ability to drive a motor vehicle safely. The more you drink, the greater the effect. As with BAC, the signs of impairment differ with the individual.
In single-vehicle crashes, the relative risk of a driver with BAC between .08 and .10 is at least 11 times greater than for drivers with a BAC of zero, and 52 times greater for young males. Further, many studies have shown that even small amounts of alcohol can impair a person’s ability to drive.
Every State has passed a law making it illegal to drive with a BAC of .08 or higher. A driver also can be arrested with a BAC below .08 when a law enforcement officer has probable cause, based on the driver’s behavior.
Poll Results from MonkeyMeter.com: Do You Drive Under The Influence
Information provided by National Highway Traffic Safety Administration