“I only had one glass of wine,” she says as she gets behind the wheel of a car. Sometimes even one glass is too much.
Surprisingly, the effects of alcohol start with the first glass, according to MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving). Until you know how alcohol affects your body, you should never agree to drive even if you’ve only had one alcoholic beverage.
If you or someone you love has been hurt due negligence of an intoxicated driver on Oahu, Recovery Law Center can help. Our Honolulu drunk driving injury lawyer can guide you through the personal injury process so that you obtain the compensation you deserve from the at-fault driver.
Contact us today to learn your legal options.
What Is the Legal Driving Limit?
Drunk driving is the number one cause of death on our nation’s roadways, killing 11,000 people a year.
Throughout most of the United States, the blood alcohol content (BAC) allowed to drive a motor vehicle is 0.08. This is the case in Hawaii as well. However, in July 2020, the Aloha State enacted stiffer penalties for drivers whose BAC reaches .15 or above. This applies to first-time offenders.
Upon conviction, the driver’s license and car registration are revoked for six months to a year. The driver must spend at least 14 hours in rehab, two to five days in jail, pay up to $1,000 in fines, and/or do three days of community service.
While criminal penalties attempt to curb a drunk driver’s negligent actions, they do not compensate people who have been hurt in the accidents they cause. If you were injured by an impaired driver, you need a drunk driving injury lawyer to fight for compensation for your losses.
Could You Drive After One Drink?
Whether you can drive after one drink depends on several factors. Most importantly, what is the alcohol content of the drink? Beer, wine and liquor have different alcohol content.
Other factors determine how your body handles alcohol:
- Whether you’re consuming food while drinking
- Whether you’re male or female
- Body type, including fat content and how your liver breaks down alcohol
- Medications you are taking
- How fast you drink
- Weather conditions — Hot and sunny weather is dehydrating, which can strengthen alcohol’s effects on the body.
Myths About Drunk Driving
One of the most common myths about drunk driving is the “one drink per hour rule.” The truth is that if you drink any alcohol at all, you shouldn’t drive. Period.
Here are other myths from the Draeger Interlock, a global manufacturer of products that ignition interlock devices:
Myth 1: It’s okay to drink as long as you’re eating, too.
Fact: Food is not a reliable antidote for alcohol. Don’t count on it.
Myth 2: Coffee will sober you up.
Fact: Coffee will not sustain your reflexes, vision and judgment after drinking.
Myth 3: Drinking beer or wine doesn’t have as much effect on you as hard liquor.
Fact: A 12-ounce beer contains as much alcohol as a 5-ounce glass of wine or a 1.5 ounce shot of 80-proof whiskey.
Myth 4: Sober up by taking a cold shower, splashing your face with cold water, or lowering the car door window.
Fact: None of these methods work.
Myth 5: One drink actually improves your driving.
Fact: Changes to your judgment, inhibitions, vision, and reflexes can be noted after a single drink.
Myth 6: If you are a larger person, you can handle more alcohol.
Fact: This is not something you can rely on. Other factors can counteract your size, even if you drink small amounts of alcohol.
Myth 7: If you drive slowly after you’ve been drinking, you’ll be able to handle the road.
Fact: It doesn’t help. The alcohol still impairs your reflexes, judgment and vision.
What if I Have Been Injured by a Drunk Driver?
If you’ve been injured by a drunk driver, it’s important to take swift, decisive action:
- Seek medical care immediately.
- Contact law enforcement.
- If possible, collect evidence from the accident scene.
- Contact a drunk driving injury attorney right away to learn your legal rights.
Contact Our Drunk Driving Injury Lawyer
If you’ve been injured in a drunk driving crash in Hawaii, contact Recovery Law Center immediately. Honolulu attorney Glenn Honda has 25 years of experience defending the rights of people who have been injured by drunk drivers.
Our law firm is available 24/7 and has the experience, skill and resources to build a strong injury claim on your behalf.