Most of us have heard of BAC levels, and what can happen if they’re too high and law enforcement gets involved, but not everyone understands how it works. Blood Alcohol Content(BAC) refers to the percentage of alcohol in a person’s bloodstream.
In other words, Blood alcohol content measures the amount of alcohol present in a person’s bloodstream. For example, if a person has a BAC of 0.10% that means that a person’s bloodstream contains one part of alcohol for every 1000 parts of blood.
Blood Alcohol Content(BAC) can be measured within 30-70 minutes after consumption of alcohol.
The definition for the term “one drink” can vary based on various factors. A standard drink size varies depending on the type of alcohol consumed and alcohol content.
"standard" drink contains approximately 14 grams of pure alcohol, which is found in: 12 ounces of regular beer (alcohol content in beer is 5%) or 5 ounces of wine (alcohol content in wine is 12%) or 1.5 ounces of distilled spirits (alcohol content in spirits is 40%).
In US, in most states, the legal blood-alcohol content (BAC) limit is 0.08 percent. If you are caught driving with a BAC of 0.08 or above, you can be arrested for driving under the influence (DUI).
However, important point to note here is that 0.08 percent limit is not universally applicable to all categories of drivers. There are different BAC limits applicable for different category of people e.g., drivers below 21 years old, commercial drivers etc.,
For drivers below 21 years old the BAC limit is 0.02 and for commercial drivers, such as a truck drivers, BAC limit is 0.04.
Breathalyzer test is administered to accurately measure the BAC level. In this test, driver need to blow into the device. The tool then can measure the driver's BAC based on the alcohol content in the driver's breath.
Interested to know what your BAC might be? Use our BAC calculator to estimate your BAC level, but don’t forget that everyone metabolises alcohol (beer, wine, liquor) differently.