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Understanding BAC and effects on drivers

Alcohol affects each person differently, and no two people in Michigan or elsewhere react to alcohol consumption in the same way. Various factors determine how alcohol will affect a person, including the person’s size, physical condition, gender and more. Regardless, those who drink alcohol before getting behind the wheel of a car put themselves and everyone else on the road in danger.

Blood alcohol content explained

The gold standard of measuring a driver’s sobriety is blood alcohol content. The amount of alcohol is measure in a person’s bloodstream in milligrams per milliliters, or the number of milligrams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood. In Michigan, a person with a BAC of .08 or higher is considered legally too intoxicated to drive.

However, just because that is the standard measurement, it does not mean that a driver is able to drive safely with a BAC below that level. Impairment actually begins with a BAC of .02, and a BAC of .05 may cause loss of muscle control and coordination problems. Beyond that, a person becomes visibly intoxicated, with slurred speech, trouble walking, etc. Various physiological factors determine how alcohol affects a person, and while one person may feel and act fine with a BAC of .08 of higher, another person may exhibit clear signs of intoxication with a BAC below that.

Bottom line: don’t drink and drive

Regardless of how a person thinks he or she can handle alcohol consumption, the truth is that any alcohol can affect a person’s reasoning, depth perception, eyesight and coordination — each of which are imperative to drive safely. If a person gets in an accident caused by an allegedly drunk driver and suffers serious injuries, that person can consult with an experienced personal injury attorney to obtain a full understanding of his or her rights and options with regard to seeking compensation.