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Blood alcohol concentration is the number of grams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood.

Blood alcohol concentration is the number of grams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood. When we ingest alcohol our liver works hard to process the alcohol so that it can be turned into sugar which the body can use for energy. What our liver cannot process, our small intestines absorb into our blood stream.

The alcohol stays in the blood. Some of our blood goes to the lungs and in the lungs some of the alcohol is passed out with the carbon dioxide that our blood releases. This alcohol that is passed out with the carbon dioxide in our breath can be measured by breath analyzing machines. What alcohol we do not pass out in our breath, remains in our blood streams until the blood finds its way to the kidneys.

The kidneys filter all the alcohol out and it is passed out in our urine. It is for this reason that police officers make roadside sobriety checks and use a breath analyzing machine. Later, when the suspected drunk driver has been arrested, he will be subjected to a blood or urine test to confirm the presence of alcohol in the blood or urine and to confirm the amount of alcohol.

Zero blood alcohol concentration is mandatory for all learners and provisional license holders. When you are stopped by a police officer and your blood alcohol is not zero, you are in danger of losing your learner’s license or provisional license. You may also be fined up to $1,100. Worse, you will have a criminal record.

The worst possible consequence of driving while under the influence of alcohol is the possibility of crashing. You don’t have to be drunk to get into a car crash. Alcohol impairs the mood, it impairs the judgment and it impairs the speed of our reflexes. Even a small amount of alcohol in the blood can impair you enough to affect your driving. It is not only your own life and your own property you are endangering you are also endangering the lives and property of other motorists and pedestrians on the road.


Blood alcohol limits (2011). Transport Roads and Maritime Services, New South Wales Government [online].

Disclaimer : This article is just a summary of the subject matter being discussed and should not be regarded as a comprehensive legal advice for you to defend yourself alone. If you are charged with criminal offences, it is recommended that you seek legal assistance from criminal lawyers.

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