How accurate are breathalyzer tests?
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How accurate are breathalyzer tests?

On Behalf of | Dec 1, 2020 | DUI |

You went out to a small holiday gathering with some friends. Of course, you had a few drinks. But you thought you were fine to drive home until you saw those flashing lights in your rear-view mirror. Before you knew it, a police officer had you take a breathalyzer test and your blood alcohol level registered .08.

Now, you’re facing DUI charges. What are you going to do now?

One thing you should know is that breathalyzer tests aren’t always accurate. In fact, according to a 2019 New York Times report, at times breathalyzer machines can report blood alcohol levels that are 40% to high. As a result, judges threw out more than 30,000 breath test results in Massachusetts and New Jersey in 2018. A judge in Pennsylvania questioned if any breathalyzer tests in his district could withstand legal scrutiny.

What causes an inaccurate breath test?

Many different circumstances can lead to an inaccurate breathalyzer test. Some of those include the following:

  • The machine isn’t calibrated properly.
  • The machine’s software isn’t operating correctly.
  • The machine hasn’t been well-maintained.
  • Police administer the breath test improperly.
  • You have a medical condition that makes your breath test results inaccurate.

What should you do if you fail a breath test?

If you fail a breathalyzer test and police charge you with DUI, you should contact an experienced criminal defense attorney. An attorney can help determine if your breathalyzer test results were inaccurate or other factors played a role in your DUI arrest.

You want to do all you can to avoid a DUI conviction, which comes with serious penalties in Pennsylvania. An attorney can help present your best defense against DUI charges and possibly find ways to reduce or dismiss your charges. Then, you can move forward without paying the consequences that come with a DUI conviction.