As the Iowa Legislature appears poised to toughen Iowa’s drunken driving law, just what does a “point-oh-eight” (.08) blood alcohol level mean? Bill Shackelford, the president of the Iowa chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving, says it means eight-tenths of one percent of your blood is alcohol. Shackelford says there a whole lot of things that can impact when a person gets to point-oh-eight (.08). He says in general, a 170 pound man reaches point-oh-eight when they drink four to five drinks in an hour on an empty stomach. A 137 pound woman reaches point-oh-eight after consuming three to four drinks in an hour.Shackleford says there are several things that impact just how quickly and how long it takes to get intoxicated. He says a breathalizer will detect a blood alcohol level right after you take a drink. Women metabolize alcohol differently than men, and tend to stay intoxicated longer according to Shackleford. Members of his group — MADD — are holding their breath, waiting for the Legislature to pass the bill that lowered the blood alcohol standard in Iowa from point-one to point-oh-eight. The drunken driving bill passed the House last week.
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