One assumption that a lot of drivers make is that the limit for blood-alcohol concentration is a BAC of 0.08%. This is often just referred to as the “legal limit.” It indicates the amount of alcohol you can have in your system while operating a motor vehicle.
It is important for most drivers to know what this limit is and to work hard to stay under it. If you’re over it, the court can presume that you’re impaired. You can still get a DUI even under this limit, but it’s more difficult for the police to prove that you were impaired.
All that being said, the legal BAC limit for you may actually not be 0.08%. New Mexico has three different BAC limits you need to know.
The limit for commercial drivers
First and foremost, commercial drivers are held to a higher standard. They get a limit of 0.04%, or half of what they would be allowed to have as civilian drivers. For instance, long-haul truck drivers need to be very careful about how much they consume, even if they’re just stopping for a meal.
The limit for underage drivers
For those who are under 21 years of age, this limit is cut in half yet again. It’s set at 0.02%. The law was set up this way simply because the legal drinking age is 21 years old, so the authorities know that they should theoretically never find a driver who is under 21 and who has alcohol in their system at all.
If you get arrested, perhaps because you didn’t realize what BAC limit was set for you, it’s very important to understand all of your legal defense options.