The legal limit for blood-alcohol content (BAC) to drive in Oklahoma is .08 percent. Some people in Oklahoma City think that they can still drive safely as long as they stay below the legal limit.
This is a problem for two reasons. First, it is very hard to tell if you are legally impaired or not. Drinkers often underestimate how drunk they really are. Second, just because someone has not drunk enough alcohol to hit .08 percent, it does not mean they are sober enough to operate a car, truck or SUV safely. A buzzed driver can still be impaired enough to cause a severe car accident.
Alcohol’s effects begin with the first drink
According to the NHTSA, alcohol starts affecting your driving ability after the first drink. Here is a summary of how different BAC levels cause impairment.
- .02 percent: Reduced eye function, increased difficulty in multitasking.
- .05 percent: Reduced coordination, ability to track moving objects, and reaction time to emergencies.
- .08 percent: Impaired concentration, short-term memory, information processing and perception. Reduced ability to control the vehicle’s speed.
Driving while impaired by alcohol and causing a car accident can be grounds for a personal injury lawsuit if someone was seriously hurt. Personal injury law is separate from criminal law, so the fact that the driver was not over the legal limit does not necessarily matter. Instead, evidence that the driver negligently chose to drive despite being impaired by alcohol may help you and your family recover compensation for things like your hospital bills, lost wages and pain and suffering.