Under the Road Transport (Safety and Traffic Management) Act 1999 (NSW), there are 2 types of drink driving offences in which you could be charged under:
- Driving Under the Influence (DUI) – s12
- Prescribed Concentration of Alcohol (PCA) – s9
Usually, police will charge you with PCA because more often than not, they will have a precise blood alcohol reading via breath testing. If however, the police do not have a reading, then they will charge you with DUI. This is the case if you refused to be tested, there was a technical problem or another reason why a reading could not be obtained. It is important to note, however, that refusal of a breath test or blood analysis are offences in themselves. If refused, it may lead to an arrest and a requirement to undergo breath analysis. A certificate signed by an authorised officer as to a person’s alcohol reading is on the face of it (prima facie) evidence of it and a certificate outside the 2-hour time limit is generally inadmissible.
These days there are very few DUI offences as this is the older charge and has been superseded by PCA offences.
It makes sense that the more alcohol is in your blood, the severer the penalty will be. If your offence was in the lower range and you have a good record, there is a good chance that you will not receive a criminal conviction. If however, your offence was in the higher range, generally you will be fined and your licence will be suspended. A criminal conviction may also be recorded.
It is generally appreciated there are five different categories of PCA offences including novice range, special range, low range, middle range and high range.
Whether or not you wish to plead guilty to the drink driving offence you are charged with, it is crucial that you get legal advice and fast.
No person should rely on the contents of this article without first obtaining advice from a qualified professional person. Neither the publisher or the writer are engaged in rendering legal advice or services. Should you require more detail you may contact Dean Wright Principal Solicitor of Wright Lawyers on 0404205881