How Much Can You Drink and Drive in New Brunswick in 2023

Drink and drive laws in New Brunswick Canada

The legal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) in New Brunswick is 0.05% grams or 0.50 mg. This BAC is approximately equivalent to drinking two bottles of beer.

If you are caught driving with a 0.05% blood alcohol level, you can be immediately apprehended and get suspended from driving

Statistics from the Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators (CCMTA) show that, on average, 25.5% of drivers in serious injury accidents in New Brunswick were driving under the influence of alcohol.

This article aims to inform drivers about the BAC limit and impaired driving regulations in New Brunswick. We do not encourage driving after drinking alcohol. 

We recommend getting a cab or an Uber for travel after drinking. You can also hire a designated driver to transport you. 

Checking your province’s official website for updates about impaired driving laws is highly suggested.

Legal Alcohol Limit When Driving in New Brunswick

The legal BAC limit in New Brunswick is 0.50 mg or 0.05% grams. Violating this limit may cause suspensions and charges. But, you can attain this BAC threshold by drinking a certain amount of liquor within a given period.

Your BAC can be calculated and charted after consuming a certain amount of alcohol.

For instance, a male weighing 160 pounds (72 kilograms) who drinks one bottle (12 oz/330 ml) of beer with a 5% alcohol content in an hour may have a blood alcohol percentage of around 0.02%.

A BAC of 0.05% is within the permitted alcohol limit. This threshold will be obtained if a man of the said weight consumes two bottles in an hour.

However, you should know that everyone takes alcohol differently. Several variables, including age, gender, weight, metabolism, etc., influence alcohol’s effects on a person’s body.

Men and women have drastically different blood alcohol levels. Men of the same age and weight frequently have greater BACs than women.

Additionally, men’s stomachs and livers contain higher concentrations of the alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) enzyme, which speeds up the metabolism of alcohol.

Drink and Drive Punishment in New Brunswick

Below are New Brunswick’s current measures to curb alcohol-related car accidents.

Short-Term License Suspension

A driver’s license will be temporarily suspended if their BAC result is between the warning range of 0.05 and 0.08. Now, temporary license suspensions are noted on a driver’s record.

With each subsequent offense, the penalties increase:

  • A seven-day suspension for the first offense during the previous five years;
  • A 15-day suspension for the second offense within the previous five years;
  • 30-day suspension for a third or more violations during the last five years.
  • $230 increase in the reinstatement fee for your license and enrollment in a course on drinking and driving. Additionally, the motorist is qualified for the voluntary interlock program.

Impoundment Program

Short-term license suspensions and cases of alcohol-impaired driving under the Criminal Code of Canada will be subject to the impoundment program.

Vehicles will be seized in different levels of punishment according to the BAC level and the number of offenses. 

Mandatory Interlock Program

In this program, vehicle interlock systems will be fitted for qualified drivers. A limited driver’s license will be given to the driver, allowing them to drive only cars with ignition interlocks that detect alcohol. Participants cover the program’s expenses.

The instrument is a breathalyzer-like mechanism mounted on a car’s dashboard. The driver must blow and hum into the device to start the car. The vehicle won’t start if the analyzed result exceeds the programmed blood alcohol content.

When Can You Drink and Drive in New Brunswick

As stated above, every person’s response to alcohol is distinct. The data below is based on studies, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that it applies to everyone.

Also, the alcohol content of mixed drinks and the amount of liquor in the containers can affect your BAC.

Our bodies respond differently to alcohol, and every one of us has a varied alcohol tolerance. We still highly recommend avoiding drinking and driving.

How Many Beers Can You Drink and Drive in New Brunswick?

According to the BAC charts and calculators, a man who weighs 160 pounds (72 kilograms) can consume one to two 12-ounce/350-ml bottles of beer with an alcohol content of roughly 5% in an hour. 

Consumption of these amounts of alcohol can bring 0.05% blood alcohol level to a 160-pound (72 kilograms) man.

A lady of the same weight who consumes the same amount of alcohol over the same period can consume one beer bottle.

How Much Wine Can You Drink and Drive in New Brunswick?

Again, based on the BAC chart, the recommended intake for a male weighing 160 pounds (72 kilograms) is one glass of wine with a 12% alcohol content in an hour. The exact amount of wine will suffice for a woman of equal weight to finish within an hour.

How Many Shots of Vodka or Whiskey Can You Drink and Drive in New Brunswick?

The same example shows that 1.5 ounces of around 40%-alcohol spirits can result in a BAC of 0.02% in a 160-pound (72-kg) male. The same applies to a woman with a similar weight. One shot within an hour should be sufficient if you plan to drive home. Anything above one go can cause you to exceed the permitted BAC level.

Stick to New Brunswick’s Impaired Driving Laws

There are multiple safe methods to get home, so driving while intoxicated is not an excuse. When you drive after drinking, you put other people’s safety and your own life in peril.

It is advised to refrain from driving if you have even a few drinks. Even though there is a legal limit for blood alcohol content, it is safer to designate a sober driver, take a cab, or utilize an Uber than to drive when intoxicated.

Make sure your blood alcohol content (BAC) is within the legal limit based on the most recent legislation accessible on the or province’s official website if you must drive after drinking.

Even if we have set drinking limits, it is still crucial to accurately test your blood alcohol concentration with a reliable alcohol breathalyzer.

About the author

Ashley Cresswell

Ashley Cresswell is a former phlebotomist with a passion for road safety. During her time as a phlebotomist, Ashley administered over 1000 blood alcohol tests to impaired drivers and was shocked to discover that many of them were simply uninformed about the legal limits for driving under the influence. As a result, Ashley conducted extensive research on scientific studies and local laws to bring drivers a comprehensive resource on drink and drive limits from around the world.

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