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City of Rancho Cordova Rancho Cordova Police Department

DUI Quiz

In America, the actions of an impaired driver result in a death every 30 minutes, and an injury every two minutes. In other words, everybody is at risk - which means you, your family or friends could be next!

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s annual December educational campaign of National Drunk and Drugged Driving (3D) Prevention Month is again upon us. During the “3D” Month, the Rancho Cordova Police Department is committed to reducing alcohol and drug-related traffic deaths by sending the message: Make the right choice, don’t drink and drive. Know the facts about impaired driving! The following quiz is designed to test your knowledge on the basics of DUI.

Question Number 1
Alcohol is a toxic drug that can create:
a. Tolerance.
b. Dependence.
c. Withdrawal.
d. All of the above.
e. None of the above.
f. Both b and c.
Answer: d

Alcohol is a powerful drug, medically classified as a depressant, which affects you physically. When an alcoholic beverage is consumed, it does not need to be digested. Therefore, it is quickly absorbed into the bloodstream, and is slowly processed by the liver until it is removed from your body. Alcohol slows the thought processes in the brain, numbs brain cells and affects all major organs. Additionally, alcohol affects your driving skills, because it affects the central nervous system. This leads to:

  • Slow reaction time, which interferes with your coordination.
  • Visual problems, such as double or multiple vision, blurring, and reduced side vision.
  • Poor judgment and the inability to make safe decisions.
  • Loss of concentration and drowsiness.

The physical impact that alcohol may create results in a tolerance for increasing amounts to feel the same effects; dependence for regular doses in order to function both mentally and physically; and withdrawal symptoms occur both physically and mentally when consumption is either reduced or stopped.

Question Number 2
In the State of California, what blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is considered unlawful for a person to operate a motor vehicle?
a. 0.04 %
b. 0.05 %
c. 0.08 %
d. 0.10 %
Answer: c

Question Number 3
In the State of California, what blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is considered unlawful for a person under 21 years of age to operate a motor vehicle?
a. 0.04 %
b. 0.05 %
c. 0.08 %
d. 0.10 %
Answer: b

Question Number 4
In the State of California, what blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is considered unlawful for a person to operate a commercial vehicle?
a. 0.04 %
b. 0.05 %
c. 0.08 %
d. 0.10 %
Answer: a

Driving while under the influence of alcohol is illegal throughout the United States. In California, Section 23152 of the Vehicle Code establishes the crime of DUI. The Section states it unlawful for any person who is under the influence of any alcoholic beverage or drug, or under the combined influence of any alcoholic beverage and drug, to drive a vehicle. The Section further defines a violation of this law that it is unlawful for a driver of a vehicle to have a BAC of 0.08 percent, and a driver of a commercial vehicle to have a BAC of 0.04 percent. Section 23140 of the Vehicle Code addresses drivers under the age of 21 years and provides that it is unlawful for those persons to drive with a BAC of 0.05 percent.

So, how many drinks does it take to reach a BAC to be legally under the influence? There are several factors that contribute to a person’s level of impairment. A person’s body weight, the amount of food that has been consumed, how fast alcoholic beverages are consumed, and a person’s mood can all play a role. Also, the different types of alcoholic beverages consumed make a difference. Twelve ounces of beer has 5 percent alcohol, 5 ounces of table wine has 12 percent alcohol, and 1.5 ounces of 80-proof liquor has 40 percent alcohol. All of these have about the same amount of pure alcohol, which is approximately 0.6 ounces.

As an example, a 160-pound individual who consumes three alcoholic beverages within a one-hour time span will likely register a BAC of approximately 0.09 percent. A 120-pound individual who consumes four alcoholic beverages within a one-hour time span will likely register a BAC of 0.16 percent. In both examples, the individuals would be above the legal limit of intoxication in California. These figures are to be used as a guide only. For some people, even one drink could be too many!

Question Number 5
True or False
The California Zero Tolerance Law is an administrative offense subject only to civil penalties, and is considered neither an infraction nor a public offense.
Answer: True

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and law enforcement agencies across the country practice a zero tolerance policy toward underage drivers and alcohol. In California, the Zero Tolerance Law was enacted in 1993, to reduce the disproportionately high number of alcohol-related traffic collisions involving the under 21 year-old driver.

Sections 23136 and 23137 of the Vehicle Code have established zero tolerance as a Department of Motor Vehicle’s administrative offense only, and not a violation of criminal law. Enforcement of the Zero Tolerance Law does not relieve officers from the other alcohol-related Vehicle Code enforcement sections. The Zero Tolerance Law may only be enforced when an officer in the field administers a Preliminary Alcohol Screening (PAS) device test to measure the driver’s BAC. If the results of the PAS test are 0.01 percent or higher and the individual is not under the influence of alcohol which would require their arrest, the under 21 year-old driver is subject to the Administrative Per Se Order of Suspension/Revocation of their California driver’s license.

Question Number 6
True or False
The probability of a traffic collision increases with any driver who has a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level higher than zero.
Answer: True

It is common knowledge that alcohol impairment contributes to traffic collisions; however, most people believe that drivers must be "drunk" to be considered a hazard behind the wheel. Actually, the probability of a collision increases with any driver who has a BAC higher than zero and this probability dramatically increases when a driver’s BAC reaches 0.08 percent. Here is something to consider: the likelihood of a car crash increases even before you reach the legal limit of 0.08 percent.

  • If the BAC is 0.05 percent, a person is 1 ½ times more likely to crash.
  • If the BAC is 0.10 percent, a person is 7 times more likely to crash.
  • If the BAC is 0.15 percent, a person is 25 times more likely to crash.


Question Number 7
When a family member or friend has had a few drinks, but does not appear to be impaired and expresses the intent to drive, you should:
a. Let them drive; after all, it’s only a few miles.
b. Immediately call the police.
c. Offer to drive them home, arrange alternate transportation, or a place for them to sleep.
d. Violently wrestle the keys away and tell them they have to walk.
e. Gently coax the keys away, while explaining your concerns about drinking and driving.
f. Both c and e.
Answer: f

Although a person may appear sober, if they have consumed any amount of alcohol, their ability to safely operate a motor vehicle has likely been impaired. Although alcohol-related collisions tend to peak at night and during the weekend, they can and do occur at all hours of the day and involve individuals from all walks of life.

Convincing a friend or family member to hand over the keys after they have been drinking can sometimes be a less than pleasant experience. Such attempts are often met with open hostility, anger, and even violence. It is still important, however, to make every attempt possible to prevent a loved one from getting behind the wheel when they are under-the-influence.

Offer to drive them home, arrange alternate transportation, or a place for them to sleep. Don’t speak harshly, yell, or do anything else that may cause them to become defensive. Rather, gently coax the keys away, while explaining your concerns about drinking and drive. Make light of the situation, tell a joke, or make up a reason insisting you should be the one to drive. Your attempts may not be well received initially, but chances are, you will have saved someone from serious injury or even death.

Question Number 8
Which of the following is the best method for a person to sober up after consuming alcoholic beverages?
a. A cold shower.
b. Strong black coffee.
c. Fresh air and exercise.
d. Time.
e. All of the above.
f. None of the above.
Answer: d

There are many myths about quick ways to sober up; the truth is that nothing but time will help sober up someone who has been drinking. Depending on the BAC level, a person’s BAC drops about 0.015 percent per hour, if no more alcoholic drinks are consumed. For a 140-pound person with a BAC of 0.10 percent (approximately 3 alcoholic drinks in one hour), it would take more than 3 hours before that person’s BAC would drop below 0.05 percent and more than 6 hours before all traces of alcohol have been eliminated from the bloodstream.

You Can Stop Impaired Driving!
Driving while impaired is preventable. The following are some things you can do to help reduce incidences of impaired driving:

  • Don ‘t let family members or friends get behind the wheel after they have been drinking—even if they do not appear to be impaired.
  • Help raise awareness in your community about the deadly consequences of impaired driving. This can start right at home by talking openly to your children.
  • Become active in your community, you can educate the public and encourage responsible behavior.
  • Support your local law enforcement agency in their efforts to remove DUI drivers from the streets by reporting anyone you suspect is operating a motor vehicle while under the influence.
  • Set an example: Don’t Drink & Drive!