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What blood alcohol concentration limits mean for you

On Behalf of | Sep 14, 2021 | Drunk driving

North Carolina has some of the strictest driving while intoxicated (DWI) and driving under the influence (DUI) laws in the country. If a police officer stops you because they suspect you may be under the influence, you should comply with their request to measure your blood alcohol concentration (BAC).

Law enforcement officers use two types of tests to determine whether you are intoxicated or not. If your test results are high enough, you may be arrested and charged with DUI.

How does a police officer measure blood alcohol concentration?

The police officer who stopped you may use one of two types of tests. The first is a breath test, using a Breathalyzer. This test gives the officer a reading that lets him know what your BAC is. If it is high enough, the officer may arrest you and take you to jail.

The second test is a blood test. If you have passed out, the police officer has to get a search warrant before testing your blood.

Blood alcohol concentration limits and implied consent

In North Carolina, if you have a BAC of 0.08 percent, this is the lower limit of intoxication. The state has a zero tolerance BAC limit for underage drivers. This is 0.00 percent.

If you have a BAC limit of 0.15 percent, this is an enhanced penalty (aggravated DUI).

North Carolina’s DUI laws have an Implied Consent to Submit to a BAC. If you refuse to consent to a BAC test, your driving privileges may be suspended for at least one year.

Select penalties for DUI

On the first, second and third offense, your license may be suspended for 30 days to one year, four years or permanently, respectively. You may be required to undergo assessment, treatment and mandatory alcohol education.

You may be required to have an ignition interlock device installed on your car. If you have a fourth offense, your vehicle may be confiscated.