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Health & Fitness

What’s the Difference of DWI and DUI?

You probably have heard about DWI and DUI, but many people forget what it truly means. There’s mostly a confusion when it comes to the distinction of a DWI or DUI which could actually be enhanced through the variations between its jurisdictions.


DUI means Driving Under the Influence, which is associated with people driving while they are drunk, but this could also be applied for those who are under the influence of medications or drugs. There are also some states that provides a first offense, which means that those who commits DUI while they drive a motor vehicle on a road or a highway with a blood-alcohol concentration to about .08% whether they are impaired visibly.

To some states, the defendant must be driving a vehicle for them to be convicted of being drunk while driving, but it is changing now. There are a lot of states which in fact use phrases such as “operating a vehicle” or when you are “being in physical control of the vehicle” so the situation can be broaden to where one is going to be convicted with DUI like the case of sitting in the driver’s seat and having the keys in the ignition even if the car is not moving.

Understanding DWI

DWI is mostly state-specific. In some states, DWI means “driving while intoxicated” and is also a synonym of DUI. There are actually some cases where DWI will mean “driving while impaired” and any form of impairment could become a reason to get the criminal charge, which also includes driving while you are physically incapable to control the vehicle safely and also driving while falling asleep. To put it simple, the elements are just the same as DUI, but alcohol or drugs should not be involved.

Either a DWI or a DUI would still mean that the arresting officer have all the reason to think that the driver is very impaired and is not capable of driving. If you think that you are impaired or is simply not capable of driving because of intoxication, drug use or other form of reasons where you are not capable of travelling, you should look for other ways to put off the trip until you are not impaired.

If ever you were criminally charged with DUI or DWI or have fears of being liable for your actions while you are impaired, it is best that you contact an attorney who can help you on the case you are facing. When you were injured by someone who has been a suspect of being impaired, you could contact the local law enforcement to pursue a claim against the driver for the damages and injuries you have sustained.

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