How To Calculate BAC

You’re at a party, hanging out with friends and having a few alcoholic beverages. When the night is over, you feel a little tipsy, maybe with blurry vision or slurred speech.  Still, you tell yourself “it was only a few drinks.” Maybe you assure yourself that you’ll be fine since you had food with your drinks. So you say goodbye to your friends, leave the party, and head out to drive yourself home. You might think you can drive, but in a drunk-driving scenario, the results are often life-changing. Yet many people can likely imagine themselves in this scenario. Unfortunately, many do make the decision to drive under the influence.

According to Florida Statutes, any person with a blood alcohol level (BAC) of 0.08 or more grams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood is considered to be driving under the influence. This is a serious offense. For first conviction,  it can result in a fine of up to $1,000 or up to six months imprisonment. Even more seriously, driving under the influence can ruin lives other than your own. Many drunk driving accidents result in serious injuries or fatalities.

Due to the dangers of driving under the influence, it’s important to know how to figure out your BAC. First, count the number of drinks that you consumed. For calculating BAC, one drink is considered 1 ounce of 100-proof liquor, one 5 ounce glass of table wine, or one 12 ounce bottle of regular beer. Next, factor body weight into the equation. For someone who weighs 160 pounds, one drink equals a BAC of 0.023, which shows how easy it is to go over the legal level with just one drink.

If a person weighs more or less than average, their BAC will differ from the average. For someone who weighs 240 pounds, one drink results in a BAC of  around 0.016, for example, while someone who weighs 100 pounds could have one drink and already have a BAC of 0.038. It is important to be aware of your body weight in regards to alcohol consumption.

The National College for DUI Defense offers a handy calculator for figuring out your BAC. However, if you are at a party or a bar with friends, it might be difficult to access a BAC calculator. That is why it is very important to be aware of how many drinks you have had. Know your limits!

For the above scenario, here are some other options:

  •  wait to drive until you are absolutely certain that you are no longer under the influence
  • ask a sober friend to drive you home, or stay at a friend’s house
  • call a taxi or Uber

If you feel impaired, don’t drive! Staying with a friend or getting a ride may seem inconvenient. But it is much better than a drunk driving accident.


The attorneys at Perenich, Caulfield, Avril & Noyes represent those involved in car accidents, motorcycle accidents, bicycle accidents, pedestrian accidents, and other types of personal injury matters. Our firm is one of the oldest personal injury law firms in Tampa Bay. There are no attorneys’ fees or costs unless we prevail for you. Call our office 24 hours a day at 727-796-8282 or simply click here to schedule a free case consultation.


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