How to Avoid a DUI in Washington: the Ins and Outs of BAC Readings 

SR22 Insurance
December 11, 2023
Male friends out having a beer in the bar - cheap DUI insurance in Washington

In Washington state, a high BAC can send you to jail. At the very least, your license will be suspended and you’ll pay through the nose for fines, fees, lawyers, and court costs. Not to mention the hit on your car insurance rates. 

What Is BAC? 

BAC stands for blood alcohol content. That’s how much alcohol is in your system as measured by a breathalyzer or blood test. 

A high BAC matters most when you’re behind the wheel of a car. If you’re 21 or older, and it’s determined that your BAC is 0.08% or higher, you can be immediately arrested for driving under the influence (DUI). You must have an even lower BAC if you’re driving a commercial vehicle or are under 21. 

How Many Drinks Is a 0.08? 

There’s no clear-cut answer. For comparison, a 180-pound male who consumes two beers might get a reading of about half that legal limit or 0.04%. Women who drink the same two beers will usually have a somewhat higher reading. But … 

There are lots of buts. Drinkers who weigh less can get higher BACs with fewer drinks. If you’re eating while consuming alcohol, your BAC will likely rise slower than if you’re drinking on an empty stomach. The alcoholic content of a drink makes a difference, too. Your BAC will rise quicker if you’re downing whiskey shots than with the same number of light beers. 

While there’s no proven formula that will tell you how many drinks will result in a BAC of 0.08, consider this: the point at which you start feeling the effects of alcohol—slurred speech, giddiness, and difficulty walking—is generally far higher than 0.08%. 

So once you start feeling your night out, it’s too late. 

A woman's hand stops a man's hand from grabbing the car keys when he has a drink in his other hand - cheap DUI insurance in Washington

How Can I Avoid a High BAC and DUI? 

Don’t drink. Or don’t drive. It’s that simple. 

If your night out is a group activity, one person should be your designated driver. This person doesn’t drink a drop of alcohol all evening and takes everyone home. 

Many bars and restaurants will let DDs drink non-alcoholic beverages for free. If everyone in your group takes turns being the DD, it’s not too much of a hassle for anyone. 

If you’re drinking alone or no one in your group wishes not to consume, take a rideshare or public transit. Or perhaps there’s a neighborhood bar within walking distance. 

Plan ahead. Don’t risk a DUI when an alternative solution is so easy. 

Call the Experts for Help in Washington 

The penalties for getting a DUI in Washington are pretty severe. Calling a lawyer in your Washington town who specializes in DUI is a good idea. Your car has probably been towed, so you’ll need to make arrangements to get it back. 

Your next call should be to your auto insurance agent. You might need SR-22 certification to drive after a conviction. An SR-22 is legal proof that you have liability insurance. Your auto insurance agent can further explain an SR-22 and help you file the paperwork, if they keep you on as a customer. You may need to search for a new insurer that handles high-risk drivers to find the most affordable coverage. 

Reach Out for Affordable SR-22 Insurance in Washington 

No one wants to see flashing lights after a night out. But if you blow a BAC reading of 0.08%, contact Vern Fonk Insurance. We’ve helped thousands of drivers get affordable coverage even with a DUI in the recent past. 

Contact your independent Vern Fonk Insurance agent at (800) 455-8276. You can also get a quick quote online or find a Washington office and agent near you