DUI Terminology

Absorption Phase: The process or time period (thirty minutes to three hours) during which the body absorbs alcohol completely.

BAC: Blood Alcohol Concentration, aka Blood Alcohol Content. The amount of alcohol found in the blood. Used as the basis of DUI laws in every state.

Breathalyzer/Breathalyser: Machine used by police to measure a driver’s Blood Alcohol Content. This device can be handheld for use on the scene or stationary for use at a police station.

DUI: Driving Under the Influence of drugs or alcohol, including legal prescription drugs.

DWI: Driving While Intoxicated or impaired by drugs or alcohol, including legal prescription drugs. Frequently used interchangeably with DUI.

Field Sobriety Tests: Tests given by police officers and state troopers to determine a driver’s physical/mental coordination as a first step toward identifying DUI. These tests, which have been standardized by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, are standing on one leg; the horizontal gaze nystagmus test, which is where a driver follows a pen or other object only with his eyes; walking in a straight line heel-to-toe; saying the alphabet, often backwards; and touching one’s nose with their head tilted back.

Ignition Interlock Device/Vehicle Lock: A device installed on a driver’s vehicle at his own expense that has a built-in breathalyzer. If the test detects alcohol on the driver’s breath, it prevents the car from being started. This device is also known as the “blow and go.”

Implied Consent: Legal concept that all drivers, upon obtaining a driver’s license, give automatic consent to Blood Alcohol Content tests, including chemical tests and breath tests.

Occupational Limited License: aka OLL; commonly referred to as “bread and butter license.” This is a temporary license that allows the holder to drive back and forth to work while their driver’s license is under DUI suspension.

Probable Cause: Legal reason held by a police officer to stop a vehicle. It includes questioning the driver and making an arrest. Without probable cause, any evidence against the driver is suppressed, which means it can’t be used in court.

Sobriety Checkpoints: Often called “safety checkpoints” by police. Consist of roadblocks set up by police or state troopers to target drunk and impaired drivers. All drivers that go through a sobriety checkpoint will be screened for Driving Under the Influence and other driving impairments.

DUI Information

Driving Under the Influence is a serious charge in Pennsylvania. A conviction for this charge comes with very serious consequences, some of which are life-altering. DUI laws are complicated, and no two cases are the same. The laws are updated frequently, the most recent being in 2018. Each time the laws are updated, the penalties for convictions get stiffer.

DUI is determined via BAC (blood alcohol concentration) testing. These tests include field sobriety tests and chemical tests of blood, breath, or urine. If your BAC level is above 0.08 percent and you are an adult, you will be considered a drunk driver. If you refuse to take one of the tests, you will be charged for it separately, and your license will be suspended. If you are a minor (under the age of 21) and your BAC is 0.02 percent or higher, you will be considered a drunk driver. Pennsylvania has zero tolerance for underage drinking.

Increased penalties come with multiple DUI offenses, for a DUI accident, and for a BAC of higher than 0.10 percent.

An attorney experienced in handling DUI cases understands the laws and how they apply to your case. It’s vital that you hire someone as soon as possible after you are arrested.

The list on the left-hand side of this website contains more DUI information for you to explore. Have you been charged with Driving Under the Influence? If so, you require an experienced and knowledgeable DUI attorney to help you. The Logue Criminal Defense team has defended many DUI cases. Logue Law Group serves Pittsburgh, PA, West Virginia, and Ohio. Call today for a consultation: (412) 612-2210 or (412) 389-0805. Or, you may contact us online.

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