Many people are familiar with the terms DUI and DWI, but many people are not familiar with the varying violations that these terms typically encompass, as well as the related penalties. DWI refers to driving while intoxicated which typically means that one is operating a vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration higher than the legal limit of .08 in New York State. In most states, DUI typically refers to operating a vehicle under the influence of drugs or with a blood alcohol concentration at varying levels. To make it a little more complicated these terms vary from state to state. For driving offenses in New York, there is no such thing as a DUI instead the terms are ADWI (aggravated driving while intoxicated) or DWI (driving while intoxicated) DWAI (driving while ability impaired).
While many of these terms may be familiar they each have a specific meaning and separate consequences.
Aggravated DWI: An individual may be charged with aggravated driving while intoxicated when an individual has a blood alcohol concentration above .17 or a child under the age 16 un the vehicle.
DWI: An individual may be charged with driving while intoxicated when an individual has a blood alcohol concentration of .08 percent or higher. If the vehicle being operated was a commercial vehicle the New York State legal limit for blood alcohol concentration is reduced to .04 percent or higher
DWAI: An individual may be charged with driving while ability impaired by alcohol when an individual has a blood alcohol concentration of between .05 percent and .07 percent. Other evidence of an individual’s impairment may also lead to this type of charge.
DWAI/Drugs: An individual may be charged with driving while ability impaired by drugs when there is evidence that the individual has been operating a motor vehicle under the influence of a single drug that does not include alcohol.
DWAI/Combination: An individual may be charged with driving while ability impaired by combination when there is evidence that the individual has been operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol and drugs in combination.
Zero Tolerance Law: An individual may be charged with a violation of the zero-tolerance law when the operator of the vehicle is below 21 years of age and has a blood alcohol concentration of between .02 and .07 percent.
The penalties for each of these violations will vary depending upon the state it occurred it and the defendant’s driving record or criminal history. If you or someone you know has been charged with any of these driving offenses in New York it is imperative that you hire a lawyer with the experience and knowledge to understand the charges, the possible consequences, and the applicable defenses. Cambareri & Brenneck consists of former prosecutors with decades of combined experience who are committed to helping you achieve the best outcome possible.