The Applicability of DUI laws in the European nations is dependent on the tolerance for blood alcohol content in each country. There it is categorized into three types namely the standard, commercial and novice. In the US the law is almost similar, except the categorization is based on adult (>=21) and underage (<21) drivers. Even the average permissible legal limit is said to be higher in Europe (0.2 in Sweden and 0.8 in UK). When you compare this with the US limit (0.08), you may feel like migrating to the UK. In Scotland it is 0.5 for all the types. The measurement is for 100Ml of blood.
DUI Laws in Europe and USA
- The variations in the DUI laws across Europe are based on the different countries’ individual laws. For example UK allows 0.8 (unless the driver commits an offense by injuring others or damaging property). In Hungary Slovakia, Romania and some other countries, the tolerance limit is zero.
- The UK law allows 0.8 (0.35%) compared to 0.08% in the US. Maximum possible imprisonment is for 12 months in UK (72 hours to 3 months for first time offense in USA). But according to the available records this has not been imposed for first time offenders, unless the driver has injured someone or committed other forms of serious criminal offense.
- The basic levels of cases are handled by magistrates in the local courts in both US and Europe.
- It is said that the standards used for measuring blood alcohol content in Europe is almost 50 years old now (with few exceptions of updates in member nations like Sweden). But the US laws seem to be constantly updated (latest changes were made in 2015 and 2016 across Texas).
1st Offense DUI in Germany and USA
- The DUI laws in Germany are said to be relatively more updated than the countries like UK. According to the German road traffic act, the level of blood alcohol above 0.5 is considered to be an offense while driving. First time offenders pay 500 Euros. The fine amount gets double for second time offense and tripled for third time offense. In the US it is $2,000 for first time offense and $4,000 for second time offense. The third offense fine can go up to $10,000 (depending on the blood alcohol content, nature of violation (traffic rules, accident, injury, death of other person etc)). Underage (<21) are banned from drinking while driving in Europe as well as in US.
- Germany considers certain aspects of driving like shaky movement, lack of vehicle control and violations of traffic lights). In the US it is categorized into different classes from-A (criminal offense like causing serious injury or death of someone) to B (first time offense), C (Traffic Violation) and D (minor offenses like not pulling over when stopped by officers).
You need to consider the consequences of driving under the influence, than paying a few dollars in fine or spending time behind bars to get the license suspended. It can cause serious accidents leading to disability, bran damage or even death.