We caught up with Erin, Aly, Cory, and Lance at one of their usual hangouts. The four of college students, all over 21, let us videotape them drinking. We joined them on a typical weeknight, and tested their blood alcohol concentrations that night and in the morning. We wanted to see if they would still be drunk the next day.
After three hours of drinking and numerous shots and beers later all four of them registered BAC's well over the legal limit
They stopped drinking at 11 p.m. We woke them up at 8 a.m. the next morning.
"It feels like I'm disoriented I don't really have any idea of what's going on right now," Lance said.
The night before after numerous mixed drinks, shots, and beers all four were drunk, and all blew over the state's legal limit. In Texas that's .08. Lance was three times the legal limit, registering a .214, Cory blew a .183, Erin a .205 and Aly blew a .142
The next morning, we tested them again. Lance blew a .059, Cory .055, Aly .032, by far the lowest, and Erin 0.55.
"It got a little closer than I thought it would," Erin said.
All four were below the limit; no one was still legally drunk.
"Compared to how drunk we were last night. I was surprised that no one was still drunk the next morning," Lance said.
"I wasn't still drunk but I was a lot closer than I thought I'd be seeing the breathalizer and those numbers it was kind of scary," Erin said.
"When they knocked on my door I was like holy cow I'm going to be beyond drunk right now," Cory said.
"I knew it wasn't out of my system but I didn't think I'd be like over the legal limit but I knew I'd still have alcohol in my blood," Aly said.
Kyle McNew with the Texas engineering extension service says even though the four weren't legally intoxicated, they were impaired, which is just as bad.
"If your impaired don't drive, an impairment is that gray area that we deal with when you talk about the divided attention test things like that last night," Kyle McNew said. "But it’s those little things that may be the determining factor because the way statutes are written."
If a person gets behind the wheel impaired, whether they're tired or hungover, like these four, they could still get a ticket.
"The breathalizer shows that I wasn't still drunk but I could feel, I wasn't in good shape," Lance said.
Alcohol related motor vehicle crashes kill someone about every 30 minutes. Someone is injured every 2 minutes. These crashes happen all the Tim, night, and day.
"Now that I have better knowledge I can think twice about leaving in the morning," Aly said.
A lot of things could have changed the results of our study. If we would have tested them an hour earlier that morning or if they would have had another drink that night. They probably would have still been drunk. Overall the lesson is if you are still feeling the effects of alcohol the next morning, think twice about getting behind the wheel.