Drivers in New York can get arrested for a driving while intoxicated (DWI) offense if they exhibit clear signs of impairment at the wheel. Police officers can also arrest those who are driving normally if a chemical breath test shows that they are over the legal limit for their blood alcohol concentration (BAC).
Most adults with a standard driver’s license who are old enough to lawfully consume alcohol can get arrested for a DWI simply because their BAC is 0.08% or higher. When police officers administer a breath test, they can arrest someone even if they did not previously have grounds to do so based on that elevated BAC. However, some drivers are subject to a stricter limit for alcohol consumption before driving.
New York has a very strict policy for young adults at the wheel. Technically, those under the age of 21 should not have any alcohol in their bloodstream at all. Police officers may arrest any young adults whose test results show a BAC of 0.02% or higher.
Those who are required to use an interlock restriction
Drivers who have a previous DWI on their record may only be able to lawfully drive in a vehicle that has an ignition interlock device (IID) installed. These drivers are typically subject to a stricter BAC limit similar to that which applies to teen drivers. A BAC of 0.025% is usually enough to trigger their device and prevent them from starting the vehicle.
Someone in control of a bus or a semi-truck needs to have a commercial driver’s license (CDL). They will also need to abide by stricter standards than the average motorist. Someone actively in control of a commercial vehicle could end up arrested for a DWI if their BAC is 0.04% or higher.
When people understand the laws that may lead to DWI charges, they generally have an easier time avoiding infractions and also developing a defense strategy if they get arrested because of a mistake or a misunderstanding. Defending against DWI charges is possible in many cases if someone carefully reviews the case the state has against them with the assistance of an experienced legal professional.