BAC levels and drunk driving penalties
BAC levels, or blood alcohol concentration levels, indicate the amount of alcohol in a driver’s bloodstream. Law enforcement officers administer certain tests to determine the BAC levels of a driver. In Tennessee, a BAC of .08 percent or higher is considered drunk driving and is grounds for arrest. However, there are certain circumstances in which a driver could be arrested for a lower BAC.
If a driver refuses to submit to a sobriety test, he or she will be arrested per the implied consent law if the law enforcement officer suspects drunk driving. Refusing a test can result in a loss of driving privileges and certain fines. Breathalyzer units are used to administer BAC tests in the field, but there may be issues with these tests that could affect the results. If this is the case, a driver may be able to successfully challenge the prosecution’s case.
Those who are under the age of 21 can be arrested for drunk driving if they register any discernible BAC at the time of a traffic stop. Tennessee drivers convicted of drunk driving can face the loss of a drivers’ license, community service and fines. A driver under the age of 21 with a BAC of even .01 percent will face penalties for drunk driving.
If you have been arrested for drunk driving, but have concerns about your case, it is important to reach out for help. It is possible that there are issues with the case against you, the registered BAC limit may have been incorrect, or your rights may have been violated. No matter the details of your case, you always have the right to seek a legal opinion regarding drunk driving defense options.
Source: dmv.org, “DUI & DWI in Tennessee“, Accessed on March 4, 2015