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Even a mere buzz could lead to a drunk driving accident

Most people in Florida do not think much about having a drink or two at a party or happy hour. It may seem like having a beer, glass of wine or cocktail is a good way to relax, socialize or enjoy a good meal. Some may see no danger in driving after only having a couple drinks, especially if they don't think they are intoxicated. However, even having a mere buzz could impact one's driving ability.

For example, having a blood alcohol concentration that is below the legal limit of 0.08 percent can still have a negative effect on a driver's mental and physical facilities. If a driver's BAC is 0.02 percent, the driver could have problems seeing fast moving objects, and the driver may have trouble doing more than one task at a time. If a driver has a BAC of 0.05 percent, it could negatively affect the driver's coordination and ability to respond to emergencies.

Once a driver's BAC reaches 0.08 percent, the driver could have problems concentrating, may experience short-term memory loss, may not be able to control the speed at which they are driving and their capability to process information and perception could be affected. If a driver's BAC reaches 0.10 percent, they may not be able to stay in their lane of traffic or stop their vehicle when necessary. Finally, if a driver's BAC reaches 0.15 percent, it could significantly impair their ability to maintain control of their vehicle, be attentive and ability to process visual and auditory information.

As this shows, driving after having consumed even a couple drinks could have a substantial effect on a person's ability to uphold their duty to operate their vehicles in a safe manner. If this duty is breached and causes an accident that injures or kills someone else, the driver who caused the crash may be held liable. Having a BAC above the legal limit can be seen as a breach of this duty "per se," meaning that no further proof is needed to show the driver was intoxicated. Drunk driving accidents are not only serious, but they are preventable. No one should get behind the wheel of a car unless they are completely sober. To do otherwise poses a danger to all others on the roadway and could potentially lead to injuries or fatalities and a subsequent lawsuit.

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