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Friday, December 9, 2011


Determining your own BAC is extremely difficult as there are many factors which affect your level of impairment. The four main factors impacting the level of impairment are the rate of alcohol consumption, gender, body weight and the amount of food eaten.

Blood alcohol content (BAC), also called blood alcohol concentration, blood ethanol concentration, or blood alcohol level is most commonly used as a metric of alcohol intoxication for legal or medical purposes.

Blood alcohol content is usually expressed as a percentage of alcohol in the blood. For instance, a BAC of 0.10 means that 0.10% (one tenth of one percent) of a person's blood, by volume, is alcohol.

For purposes of law enforcement, blood alcohol content is used to define intoxication and provides a rough measure of impairment. Although the degree of impairment may vary among individuals with the same blood alcohol content, it can be measured objectively and is therefore legally useful and difficult to contest in court. Most countries disallow operation of motor vehicles and heavy machinery above prescribed levels of blood alcohol content. Operation of boats and aircraft are also regulated.

The alcohol level at which a person is considered to be legally impaired varies by country. The list below gives limits by country. These are typically blood alcohol content limits for the operation of a vehicle. In the United States, the legal limit can vary by state but for all states as of 2011 is 0.08 blood alcohol content as measured by a breath device, urinalysis or blood test. This legal limit is down from 0.15 just a few decades previously.

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