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New Law Modifies BAC Limit for Rideshare Drivers

Oct 29, 2018 by Mike McKneely in DUI, New Laws
Graphic Detailing Information About Rideshare Companies

Your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is a measure of alcohol in your bloodstream. It’s used as an indicator of your level of intoxication. California’s BAC for drivers 21 years of age and over is .08 percent. Until recently, that number remained the same for drivers of ridesharing services such as Uber and Lyft. This year, a new California law changed that threshold. The BAC limit for rideshare drivers while transporting passengers is now .04 percent. Depending on the individual, this could be the equivalent of one alcoholic drink.

DUI convictions can lead to lifelong consequences, including increased penalties for any future offenses for which you’re convicted. Michael McKneely, Criminal Defense Lawyer can assist you with your Fresno DUI case. Depending on the details of your situation, it may be possible to have your charges reduced. If there is a trial, a DUI lawyer at our firm will make sure to develop a strong defense that ensures all your rights remain protected. For a free consultation, reach out online or call us at (559) 443-7442 today.

New Rideshare BAC Limit Seeks to Address Complaints

According to a Public Utilities Commission (PUC) report, between 2014 and 2015, approximately 2,000 riders complained to Uber about drivers who were possibly intoxicated. 574 of those riders later deactivated their accounts. Of 154 cases the PUC examined, they found that Uber could show only 22 instances where the driver was suspended within an hour of the complaint. If the other drivers were intoxicated, they might have been allowed to finish their shifts that way.

New BAC Limit for Rideshare Drivers Applies to All Paid Employees

The lower BAC will apply to all drivers who accept passengers for hire. This refers to any individual who pays a fee for a ride. Some examples of services used by passengers for hire are:

  • Taxis
  • Uber
  • Lyft
  • Limousines
  • Party Buses

Violations of Lower BAC Threshold Will Result in Same Penalties as a Regular DUI

Paid drivers who violate the new BAC limit will face the same consequences as regular drivers who are convicted of a DUI. Under California law, these penalties include a fine of up to $2,000, at least 96 hours in jail, and up to a six-month driver’s license suspension. As a rideshare driver, these consequences will affect your job and employment, so in order to avoid the harsh penalties of a conviction, contact a Fresno DUI attorney at our firm for help today.

Lower BAC Limit Seeks to Support Rideshare Companies’ Claim of Reduced Drunk Driving

One of the biggest arguments in support of ridesharing services is their potential to reduce incidents of drunk driving. This claim ignores multiple complaints of rideshare drivers being intoxicated. Studies into drunk driving numbers before and after ridesharing have yielded mixed results. Reducing the legal BAC to theoretically one drink should make ridesharing even more efficient in its prevention of drunk driving. Those involved continue to state that the best way to avoid a DUI conviction is to consume no alcohol at all before driving.

Do You Have Questions About the New BAC Limit for Rideshare Drivers? Call Us for Help

A lawyer can determine the best way to proceed with your DUI case. If you’re accused of driving under the influence while working as an Uber, Lyft, or taxi driver in the Fresno area, contact Michael McKneely, Criminal Defense Lawyer. There are many reasons you may be suspected of driving a vehicle while intoxicated. To understand these accusations and possible defenses in your case, call us today at (559) 443-7442 or reach out via our online form to schedule a free evaluation of your case.

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