DUI vs OWI
DUI and OWI are two acronyms that are dreaded by people who sit behind wheels after drinking. Both are terms that describe criminal behavior of driving under the influence of drug or alcohol. Both terms can result in severe penalties for those booked under these charges as unsafe driving can have severe repercussions. Thousands of innocent people lose lives and limbs because of unsafe driving of others who think they can drive normally after consuming alcohol or other drugs. This article attempts to find out the differences, if any, between DUI and OWI.
DUI stands for Driving Under the Influence. It applies to a person who is sitting behind the steering and driving the car under the influence of alcohol with BAC levels in excess of those permitted by law. BAC here refers to Blood Alcohol Content. DUI is an offense for which there are severe penalties in the laws of different states, in the country. BAC levels in excess of those permitted by law are enough for a person to be booked under DUI. Authorities make use of a hand held machine called breath analyzer to check the BAC levels of a driver they suspect of driving under the influence of alcohol or other drugs. If BAC is found to be higher than that permissible by the state, the person is liable to be booked under the law, and he is later produced before a jury for pronouncing a sentence against him.
While DUI remains the generic term for drunk driving, many states have OWI, the term to deal with the offenders of safe driving rules. OWI stands for Operating While Intoxicated. This means a person who is booked under OWI was seen to be driving a vehicle while he was still under the influence of alcohol or any other drug. You must have the vehicle under your control to be booked under this law and just sitting behind the wheel is enough to be booked under OWI. Alcohol, narcotics, or a combination of drugs and alcohol, in short, anything that causes unsafe driving makes a candidate to be booked under OWI.
What is the difference between DUI and OWI?
• While DUI stands for Driving Under the Influence, OWI stands for Operating While Intoxicated.
• While DUI is the generic term for driving after drinking alcohol in most of the states, some states like Iowa prefer to make use of the term OWI.
• The word to emphasize is operating that has a broader connotation than driving.
• You can be booked under OWI even if you are not driving and just sitting behind the steering with BAC levels higher than those permitted by your state.
• While DUI deals with driving, OWI takes care of all cases where the vehicle is under the control of the person.
• Apart from these legal nuances, there is little to choose between DUI and OWI, both of which deal with drunken driving.