WEST SACRAMENTO, California. Identifying drunk drivers is often considered one of the more important tasks that California highway patrols perform. Yet, even trained observers still continue to have difficulty identifying individuals who are intoxicated. This can lead to situations where innocent people are arrested for a DUI, or a situation where a guilty drunk driver is allowed to continue to drive freely, thus endangering others on the road. According to a recent article published in the journal Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research, many factors contribute to intoxication, making identification of the condition difficult. This could have implications for DUI law in California, where visible observation of intoxication is often the reason why officers make arrests or require individuals to submit to breath tests. The Linda Louder Law Office in Sacramento assists individuals who have been arrested for DUI in California. If an officer used visual observation to determine whether you were intoxicated, the firm may be able to help.

While individuals may be “obviously intoxicated” after a great deal of drinking, lower BAC levels may not always produce reliable behaviors in observed individuals. In fact, according to the journal Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research, when individuals consume smaller amounts of alcohol, the chances that an officer will correctly identify someone drunk by sight alone is as good as chance. This means that officers may be making wrongful accusations, or even missing drunk drivers who are, in fact, intoxicated.

In general, women have to drink about 4 drinks before they can be visibly identified as intoxicated, but for men, the number may be much more. For instance, a large man may need to consume as many as 10 drinks before he would be visibly intoxicated. Of course, one could still have a BAC higher than the legal limit and not be obviously visibly intoxicated, so this should never be used as a guideline of whether it is appropriate to drink and drive. Yet, according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, almost 25% of people admitted to binge drinking at least once a month. This means that more people may be putting themselves at risk of drinking and driving, or placing themselves in a position where they could be visibly identified as intoxicated.

As many as 16.3 million adults suffers from an alcohol use disorder. Alcohol use disorder can involve excessive drinking. Individuals who drink excessively more often may be more likely to drink and drive and get a DUI. If you suffer from Alcohol use disorder, it is important to get help. However, if you’re facing a DUI, the consequences can be high. You could face jail time, license suspension, and fines. Other consequences could include increased insurance costs and difficulty accessing federal aid programs. The Linda Louder Law Office is a DUI attorney in West Sacramento who may be able to help you if you are facing these serious charges. Visit us at www.lindalouderlaw.com today to learn more and to protect your rights.