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When is it illegal to drive under the influence in Washington?

On Behalf of | Sep 2, 2015 | Fatal Motor Vehicle Accidents |

In a recent accident in Washington, an intoxicated driver was blamed for the death of a man. In that case, the possibly drunk driver swerved out of his lane and hit another car. The driver of the other car was killed on the scene. Unfortunately, fatal motor vehicle accidents like this one are all too common in Washington. Individuals get behind the wheel of a car after having too much to drink all of the time. Sometimes, these drivers get lucky and don’t cause any harm, but often drunk drivers are responsible for serious and life threatening motor vehicle accidents.

According to the Washington State Department of Licensing, people can face criminal charges for driving under the influence in a variety of situations. If the driver is under 21-years-old, then the driver can be charged with DUI if he or she has a blood alcohol concentration level at or above .02 percent. For adults 21-years-old and older, a BAC level of .08 percent is the legal limit. If they are at or above a .08 percent, then they can face criminal consequences. However, if a person is a commercial vehicle driver, then the limit is set at .04 percent.

Additionally, it is illegal for drivers in Washington to operate a motor vehicle under the influence of drugs or a combination of alcohol and drugs. In these cases, the person’s BAC level is not given as much consideration. Drugs can include household chemical inhalants which have a hallucinatory effect.

If people are caught driving in these circumstances, then they can face criminal consequences. Moreover, if an intoxicated driver causes an accident, then accident victims may be able to bring legal action. This includes a wrongful death suit in cases where someone is killed at the hands of a drunk or high driver. An attorney can fully explain a person’s rights in these situations.