Administrative license revocation (also administrative license suspension): Confiscation of driver’s license immediately upon refusal of a breath/blood test, or testing above the legal limit for breath/blood alcohol concentration. More than 40 states have some form of administrative license revocation, which may be automatic or at the discretion of the arresting officer.
Blood alcohol concentration: The amount of alcohol in the bloodstream, measured as a percentage. BAC can be measured by breath, blood or urine testing and is often used by law enforcement to determine whether a motorist is drunk. All 50 states have a limit of .08 grams of alcohol per 100 ml, and many states have lower limits for commercial vehicle drivers or those under 21.
DUI school: Drug and alcohol education programs designed to teach drivers the dangers of drinking and driving and reduce the chance of repeat offenses. Georgia calls it the DUI Alcohol or Drug Use Risk Reduction program.
Field sobriety test or FST: A test of physical or mental coordination used to provide an initial assessment of sobriety. Field sobriety tests are usually performed roadside shortly after an officer stops a driver. Field sobriety tests include walking in a straight line heel-to-toe, tilting the head back with eyes closed and touching the tip of the nose with the index finger (Rhomberg test), standing on one foot, reciting the alphabet, finger exercises and horizontal gaze nystagmus (jerking of eyes when following a stimulus to the side).
Horizontal gaze nystagmus or HGN: One of the three standardized field sobriety tests (SFST). Nystagmus is rapid involuntary rhythmic eye movement – the eyes moving quickly in one direction and slowly in the other. Horizontal gaze nystagmus is assessed by lack of smooth eye tracking, distinct jerking at maximum eye angle and onset of jerking prior to 45-degree angle.
MADD or Mothers Against Drunk Driving: MADD is a national nonprofit organization whose goal is to reduce incidences of DUI through tougher laws and education outreach.
Miranda rights: The formal advisement commonly given to someone arrested prior to questioning. These rights include the option to remain silent and to have a lawyer present before answering questions. (Not typically required in DUI cases.)
Rising curve defense: A defense to DUI charges based upon the claim that a driver was not under the influence when he or she was driving, but that their BAC rose to that level after arrest because alcohol was still being absorbed.
Sobriety checkpoints or roadblocks: The act of setting up roadblocks in a particular location for a particular time period and systematically stopping vehicles to investigate drivers for possible DUI.
Zero tolerance: Commonly used to describe laws that make it illegal to operate a vehicle with any detectable amount of alcohol. Zero tolerance typically applies to minors that have not reached the age for legally consuming alcohol. Although in Georgia the limit for persons under 21 is actually 0.02 grams.