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What is a hangover DUI?

On Behalf of | Jul 8, 2020 | Traffic Offenses And DUI

Some drivers do their part to stay off the road after having a few drinks. They make it home thanks to a rideshare or a designated driver and go to sleep. But your fears of a DUI arrest do not end because you have made it to the next day. You might still run the risk of an officer arresting you for DUI even if you have not had anything to drink that day. 

An officer arresting you for a DUI the day after you had consumed alcoholic drinks is a “hangover DUI.” Many drivers may not realize the police can perform this kind of arrest or why. FindLaw provides an explanation of why an officer might detect alcohol on your breath even after a good night’s sleep. 

Clearing alcohol from your system 

You need time for alcohol to clear out from your bloodstream. There is no specific amount of time for your body to clear alcohol since many factors can slow the process down. These factors include how much alcohol you had consumed and how fast you had drank, as well as your height, metabolism, how much you weigh, and your gender. 

Generally, it takes about one to two hours for the human body to break down an alcohol concentration of .02. So if your concentration level reaches a higher level, it will take longer for your body to process the alcohol. A concentration of .08, for instance, may take five or six hours to process. 

Being alert to a hangover DUI 

If you are not aware of how much time you need to clear alcohol from your system, there is still the chance that a breathalyzer could register the alcohol from your breath if an officer stops you on the road. DUI laws do not limit officers to only the day you had consumed alcohol. That is why you may run the risk of a hangover DUI arrest. 

Even if you feel just fine after a good night’s sleep, you should be aware that you might still possess alcohol in your system. Not feeling the effects of alcohol does not mean a breath machine cannot pick it up when you breathe into it. You might want to consider waiting longer to drive to decrease the chances of a hangover DUI arrest.