In the United States, drunk driving accidents cause about one-third of traffic-related deaths. It is illegal for drivers to operate a vehicle when their blood alcohol concentration is 0.08% or higher.
Alaska has some of the harshest drunk driving penalties in the country, making it crucial to understand the laws and your rights.
Know what operating under the influence means
The OUI laws of Alaska prohibit the operation or actual physical control of a motor vehicle when your blood alcohol content meets or exceeds the legal limit. It is critical to note that police can give you an OUI charge even if you are not driving. You can break the law by sitting in the driver’s seat while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Additional factors determine whether you are in actual physical control of the vehicle, such as:
- Are your car keys near the ignition?
- Is your engine running?
- Where is your automobile located?
- Are you awake or asleep?
Understand blood alcohol concentration laws
The 0.08% blood alcohol limit only applies to non-commercial drivers who are 21 years or older. The legal alcohol limit is lower for commercial drivers at 0.04%. For drivers under 21, any amount of alcohol present in the breath or blood is illegal.
Learn how the implied consent law works
Alaska’s implied consent law requires you to take a blood or breath test if an officer has reason to believe you are driving under the influence. You automatically permit these tests by choosing to operate a vehicle within this state. You can refuse to take them, but there are penalties.
Knowing your legal rights and responsibilities helps identify your defense options when facing DUI charges.