DUI Abbreviations Defined

In the legal system, there are endless abbreviations for crimes, processes, and other things that law enforcement use as shorthand. It is also important to note that different states may use different terms for the same crime and abbreviations can be helpful in distinguishing charges. Keep reading to learn more.

National DUI Abbreviations

As mentioned previously, abbreviations are used to denote specific crimes and punishments unique to a specific state or municipality. The most common DUI abbreviations are as follows:

  • DUI: Driving Under the Influence; this is the most universal term for drunk driving by the public and the police
  • DWI: Driving While Intoxicated; this term is often used synonymously with DUI but in states where it is used, it often denotes a more serious crime and may even include drug charges
  • BAC: Blood Alcohol Concentration; this is the term for the percentage of alcohol in the blood. In most cases, the legal limit for BAC is 0.08% for non-commercial drivers. Anyone with the a blood alcohol concentration higher than the limit could be charged with drunk driving.
  • OVI: Operating a Vehicle While under the Influence; this term is used primarily in Ohio to describe impaired driving
  • DWAI: Driving while Ability Impaired; in New York and Colorado, DWAI is a lesser charge related to intoxicated driving where the driver’s BAC is under 0.08% but their driving was still impacted
  • OWI: Operating While Intoxicated; In Michigan, this version of a DUI with minor charges
  • FST: Field Sobriety Test; when police suspect someone of drunk driving, they may ask them to take a field sobriety test which could include walking in a straight line, counting backwards, etc.
  • HGN: Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus; this is the term used to describe he jerking or twitching motion of a driver’s eyes when following a moving object horizontally. Some people may a medical condition but in most cases it is the result of intoxication
  • IID: Ignition Interlock Device; these devices are used to prevent recidivism among those who have been convicted of a DUI

DUIs are serious, and while abbreviations may take some of the seriousness out of the act, criminal charges come with serious consequences.

If you or a loved one has been arrested for a DUI in West Virginia, contact The Wagner Law Firm.