Protecting Your Rights Throughout Eastern Iowa Since 1981

Is an OWI the same as a DUI?

On Behalf of | Jul 1, 2022 | Drunk Driving

From DUIs to OWIs, there are many terms to describe impaired driving. Every state uses a specific designation that has different requirements and consequences.

In Iowa, if you operate any motorized vehicle while under the influence, you could face an OWI charge.

What is the difference between an OWI and a DUI?

An OWI has a wider range than a DUI because of the word “operating.” You can get an OWI if you are using any motorized vehicle while under the influence. Vehicles range from cars and motorized bikes to lawn mowers and farm equipment. You are operating the vehicle if the engine is running, even if you are not moving.

How do you get charged with an OWI?

You are “intoxicated” if you have taken alcohol or drugs that could impair your motor skills. For alcohol, you need to have a BAC of .08 or higher. For drugs, any drug that is still detectable in your body through blood or urine analysis could land you an OWI charge. This includes prescription drugs, too.

What are the consequences of an OWI?

If you get an OWI, you could face fines, jail time and license suspension. Underage drinkers face an automatic license suspension that lasts for 60 to 90 days. Additionally, if you are attending college in Iowa, you could face disciplinary action, like academic probation or the revocation of a scholarship.

Getting an OWI can have adverse effects on your future. Never operate a motorized vehicle while under the influence.