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Can you drive after a drink or two?

You go out to dinner with friends. The meal starts with a pre-dinner drink. During the meal, you have another drink. Things eventually wrap up and you get in your car. Is it safe to drive home?

The answer varies, but research shows that most people in Colorado believe that it's safe to drive after a drink or two, as long as they consumed them over the course of two hours. A full 73 percent of people said they feel comfortable doing that.

That said, a lot of factors are in play here. What if you had both drinks in just one hour? What if you just drank and did not eat anything? What if you almost never drink, so it tends to hit you a bit harder than someone who drinks more often?

Other things to consider include the size of the meal, your weight, your physiology and your gender. Men tend to see their blood alcohol concentration increase more slowly than women, and heavier individuals may be able to drink more than smaller individuals.

Remember, you can get a DWAI (driving while ability impaired) in Colorado if your BAC is at 0.05 or above. You can get a more traditional DUI when you hit the standard 0.08 limit. You do not have to be falling-down drunk to face charges. Many people feel fine and then wind up failing the breath test after getting pulled over.

If you are facing charges, especially if you did not think your ability to drive was impaired, you need to know all of your legal options.

Source: Colorado Department of Transportationi, "Alcohol and Impaired Driving," accessed May 08, 2018

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