If you’re pulled over by an officer in Virginia, you may have to complete a sobriety test. These tests typically involve performing basic tasks like balancing yourself or walking in a straight line. A police officer might also ask you to take a breathalyzer test to determine whether you have alcohol in your system. While these tests are frequently used as evidence in court, they’re not as accurate as they might initially seem.
How accurate are drugged driving tests?
If you’re sober, walking in a straight line or touching your nose with your finger might not sound particularly difficult. But when you’re in a tense situation with a police officer, these basic tasks can become a lot more challenging. You might fail a test when you’re completely sober simply because you’re nervous. Additionally, some people fail these tests because they have poor coordination due to age or disability. As a result, these tests aren’t always an accurate way to determine whether someone is driving under the influence.
According to criminal law, there’s no standardized way to give these sobriety tests. Officers can give these tests however they want and decide for themselves if the person has taken drugs or alcohol. Because of this, sobriety tests are decided by the officer’s own feelings instead of objective facts.
Breathalyzer tests aren’t foolproof, either. In fact, a study revealed that up to one-third of sober people failed their breathalyzer test. Overall, none of the sobriety tests that officers use are particularly accurate.
What can you do if you’re accused of a DUI?
If you received a DUI charge after failing your sobriety test, you might feel that you have no hope in court. Fortunately, however, an attorney might be able to point out the flaws in the test and keep the court from using the results against you.