Indiana University Bloomington

Drunk Driving Information

Drunk Driving is a problem that has a significant impact on so many people. The IU Police Department actively patrols for impaired drivers and participates in the DUI Taskforce and "You drink & drive you LOSE" program through the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute.

Operating a Vehicle While Intoxicated (OVWI) is the Indiana legal term for drunk driving. It is illegal and dangerous to operate a vehicle with a BAC over .08%.

In 1998, Indiana drivers with:

Blood Alcohol Concentration

Blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is the amount of alcohol in an individual’s body, measured by the weight of the alcohol in a volume of blood. The BAC limit determines the maximum amount of alcohol that can be consumed before it is illegal to operate a motor vehicle on a public road.

There are a number of ways to test an individual’s BAC. The most common method used by law enforcement officers is the breath testing device, which measures the alcohol level in the breath from the lungs. BAC can also be determined by drawing blood and measuring the amount of alcohol in the blood itself.

Blood alcohol concentration is directly correlated with the degree of impairment an individual displays when driving after drinking. Although an individual may not exhibit gross signs of inebriation, he/she is nevertheless impaired, even at a BAC level lower than that allowed by most state laws.


BAC Calculator

For a rough estimate of your level of intoxication, try the BAC Calculator below. NOTE: you can still be arrested for OVWI with a BAC between .05% and .08%. When in doubt...DO NOT DRIVE.

  • FLUID OUNCES CONSUMED (Beer ~ 12 oz. Wine Glass ~ 4 oz. 1 Shot ~ 1.5 oz)
  • YOUR WEIGHT (Lbs)
  • ALCOHOL PERCENTAGE IN BEVERAGE (Beer ~ 4-4.5% Wine ~ 15-20% 1 Shot ~ 30-50%)
  • HOURS CONSUMING DRINK
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Societal Costs

Alcohol is a factor in 24% of Indiana’s crash costs. Alcohol-related crashes in Indiana cost the public an estimated $2.4 billion in 1998, including $1.1 billion in monetary costs and almost $1.3 billion in quality of life losses. Alcohol-related crashes are deadlier and more serious than other crashes. People other than the drinking driver paid $1.5 billion of the alcohol-related crash bill.


Common Misconceptions

By sucking on a breath mint after a heavy night of drinking, I can fool a breath test.

The breath tests that we administer measure the amount of alcohol in your breath. By sucking on a breath mint or chewing gum, you are only masking the smell of your breath, not the alcohol content.

I can fool a cop by sucking on a cough drop and telling him I have a cold.

That never works. If you've made serious error in judgement (drunk driving), concealing the fact you have been drinking will only make the situation worse. Although the cough drop may mask the smell of an alcholic beverage, other signs of intoxication will invariably give you away.

I blew under .08% BAC on a PBT (portable breath test) so I must be okay to drive.

That is a very dangerous assumption to make. Although .08% is the legal limit, you can still be arrested for registering as low as .05% BAC on a breath test. It is a good idea to NOT drive if you have even had any alcohol.


If You Are Arrested

If You Are Convicted of Operating a Vehicle While Intoxicated

A Second Offense

A Third Offense


The Laws

Operating a Motor Vehicle While Intoxicated

Open Containers and Consumption in a Vehicle

Minors

Additional Links

Information taken in whole or part from the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute and NHTSA's Imparied Driving in Indiana Fact Sheet .