Texas law states that drivers who have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or higher are guilty of driving while intoxicated (DWI). A driver can also be charged with a DWI if they operate a vehicle after using drugs. This is a misdemeanor charge. It becomes a felony if a passenger is 15 years old or younger in the car. It is also illegal in Texas to drive a vehicle while in possession of an open container of alcohol.
A driver’s first DWI conviction in Texas has a variety of penalties. There is a jail term that lasts from 72 hours to 180 days. If a child is under the age of 15 in the car, the jail term is a minimum of 180 days to a possible maximum of 2 years. The driver’s license will also be suspended for a period lasting between 90 and 365 days. They would be fined up to $2,000 or up to $10,000 if there was a child of 15 or younger in the vehicle. The driver will also be charged insurance surcharges of $1,000 for t3 years. If their BAC was .16 or higher, the surcharge is increased to $2,000.
Texas zero-tolerance policy
The Texas zero-tolerance policy is something you will need to know if you are ever arrested for a DUI in the state of Texas. Many people have no idea that this type of policy exists, especially those that are in the area of Texas. There are some basic things that you need to know about the policy if you want to make sure that your rights are protected at all times.
Basically, the law states that you must receive a court-ordered sobriety test before you can be arrested on any number of different traffic violations. This includes a breath test, as well as a blood test. However, it does not include an optional oral fluid test, allowing people to refuse the test. If they do so, they must undergo a mandatory blood test as well.
This means that you may be subjected to an arrest for drunk driving if you choose to take the optional test. If you are convicted of DUI, you face jail time and fines for the offense. You may also lose your license for a year. To be eligible to avoid jail time, you must prove that you had been using a controlled substance at the time of the arrest. This is usually done by showing proof of the prescription medication that you are taking.
For example, if you have had two drinks at a bar and your blood alcohol content is above the legal limit when you are pulled over, you will be subject to the Texas zero-tolerance policy. If you are found to be in violation, the arresting officer will have the right to request blood, urine, or oral fluid tests from you and may have them administered by a professional drug testing lab. If the tests come back positive, you could be sent to jail until you pass the test or until the process of testing is complete.
For example, if you were pulled over for a suspected drunk driving violation and were found to violate the Texas zero-tolerance policy, you would be subjected to an arrest for DWI. The arresting officer has the right to request blood or urine tests, depending on the results. This is where your rights are challenged and tested in court. Should you choose to fight the test and not take the test, you may have a chance to prove in court that you did not have any drugs in your system at the time of the arrest.
To learn more about the Texas zero-tolerance policy, many online resources will help you understand it better. In most cases, the charges against you will be dropped if you agree to take a chemical test. However, it is always good to be aware of your rights and what you can do to protect them.
DUI / DWI facts and statistics in Texas
- In 2017, 173 out of the 1,468 driving fatalities due to DUI / DWI were driven by drivers under the age of 21
- In the same year, 419 out of the 64,784 offenders caught for DUI / DWI were under the age of 18
- In 2018, 155 out of the 1,439 driving fatalities due to DUI / DWI were driven by drivers under the age of 21
- In the same year, 349 out of the 69,643 offenders caught for DUI / DWI were under the age of 18
source: responsibility.org, fbi.gov