Texas Drunk Driving Laws
Zero Tolerance Laws make it illegal for drivers younger than 21 to drive with any measurable amount of alcohol in their systemâ€”regardless of the BAC limit for drivers over 21. Many states set the limit for drivers under 21 at .02 BAC or below to help reduce legal challenges based on claims that mouthwash, gum or cold medicine can be responsible for a positive but very low BAC measurement. However, there is no evidence that such substances affect the standard breath analysis tests when conducted properly or that other challenges to the accuracy of alcohol detection equipment are valid. By late 1999, all states plus the District of Columbia had zero tolerance laws for youth.
Open Container Laws prohibit the possession of any open alcoholic beverage container and the consumption of any alcoholic beverage in the passenger area of a motor vehicle. In 1998, the Federal government took steps to encourage states to enact open container laws by passing the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21), which required states to enact open container laws by October 1, 2000 or lose a portion of their Federal-aid highway construction funds. To avoid having their funds transferred to other safety activities, states must certify that they comply with Federal requirements and that their open container law is in effect and being enforced. By April 2004, 36 states and the District of Columbia complied with Federal terms of this law.