In all 50 states, the legal threshold for driving under the influence falls at 0.08% BAC. But as you can see from this chart, the risk of a car crash starts rising at BAC thresholds well below that. At a BAC of 0.05 -- completely street-legal -- your odds of wrecking your car have increased 100 percent versus someone who hasn't drunk at all. At 0.08, your crash odds have roughly tripled.
Depending on your weight and gender, it doesn't take many drinks to reach those BAC thresholds. If you're a 160-pound man, it takes just two drinks in an hour to reach a BAC of 0.05. If you're a 120-pound woman, 2 drinks will land you in 0.08 territory.
For that 160-pound man, five drinks in an hour leads to a BAC of .12 and an elevated crash risk of 682 percent (no, that figure's not missing any decimals).