September 07, 2014
How Reliable is a Breathalyzer Test?
To anyone who is not a DUI lawyer, the results of a Breathalyzer test seem like indisputable evidence. Part of that impression is based on fictional television shows. The rest likely comes from media coverage.
However, any experienced DUI lawyer can argue that the results of a Breathalyzer test are almost always questionable. This isn’t the result of some kind of lawyerly manipulation of the facts. Rather, a number of scientific studies have shown that a breath test is not the truest measurement of intoxication.
Is a Breathalyzer Test Always Accurate?
Breathalyzer results that show a driver is above the legal limit can be inaccurate for a number of reasons. A DUI lawyer who is investigating the case may discover that the equipment was malfunctioning. In another instance, the DUI lawyer may find that the test was administered improperly. However, even when the findings of the DUI lawyer suggest that everything was functioning optimally at the time the test was taken, the Breathalyzer results may still be inaccurate.
University of Washington researcher Dr. Michael Hiastala concluded that Breathalyzer results are inaccurate and that blood testing is the standard when accuracy matters. Another study found that the difference between intoxication levels in breath tests as compared to blood tests was 15%. Essentially, this means that a driver who performs a breath test that comes back showing above the limit intoxication may not actually be legally intoxicated at all.
If you have been charged with a DUI and were given a Breathalyzer test, an experienced DUI lawyer can easily poke holes in these results. It is known throughout the academic and legal fields that the Breathalyzer is an inherently inaccurate measurement of intoxication. Just because you tested at above the legal limit doesn’t mean you deserve to be convicted. Contact a DUI lawyer who will comprehensively evaluate your case to determine whether or not your test results might be questionable. You have nothing to lose, and with serious consequences pending, everything to gain.