A breathalyzer test that a driver has allegedly failed can do significant damage to that driver’s life. A failed breathalyzer test can result in DUI charges and potentially in jail time, fines, the loss of a driver’s license and the loss of personal and professional opportunities for the driver. For that reason, accused drivers should know how they can challenge the accuracy for a breathalyzer test.
Challenging the accuracy of a field sobriety test
Breathalyzer tests do not always produce reliable results. Each year, a million Americans are arrested on drunk driving charges. In New Jersey and another East Coast state, 30,000 breathalyzer tests were thrown out by courts in a 12-year period alone. They were thrown out based on concerns surrounding their reliability due to human error and a lack of government oversight. In recent years, thousands of breathalyzer tests have also been thrown out across the country.
Breathalyzer tests are scientific instruments, however, they must be properly calibrated and maintained. When they are not properly calibrated, they may yield results up to 40 times too high. A lack of expertise and low standards can result in breathalyzer tests that are not properly maintained in police stations. Software problems can also limit the accuracy of breathalyzer tests.
When breathalyzer test is faulty and leads to drunk driving charges, it may be possible to challenge the breathalyzer test that resulted in the drunk driving charges. By challenging the breathalyzer test and the drunk driving charges, accused drivers may be able to avoid the penalties and consequences of DUI charges and should be familiar with drunk driving defenses.