What are the most common breathalyzer errors?

In New Jersey, those that operate a vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08% or higher will be charged with driving while under the influence (DUI). If a law enforcement officer has probable cause to conduct a traffic stop on suspicion of DUI they will require you to submit a breathalyzer test. Essentially, a breathalyzer test measures your BAC, which reflects the percentage of alcohol in your system. In some cases, there may have been an error with the breathalyzer test which could result in an inaccurate reading. Ultimately, if there were problems with your initial breathalyzer test, it could benefit your case. To prevent the harsh penalties associated with this offense, you need to hire our determined Bergen County DUI Attorneys who can help raise all available defenses to achieve a favorable outcome.

What breathalyzer errors can impact a DUI case?

If you have been charged with DUI, it is critical to understand some of the most common breathalyzer errors as they can help you build a strong defense that can lead to dropped charges. In some cases, when there are problems with the administration of a breathalyzer it can result in improper readings.

Firstly, if you hiccup, belch, or vomit before a breathalyzer test, it will cause the alcohol reading to register higher than is accurate. When you are asked to submit to a chemical test such as a breathalyzer to test your blood alcohol concentration, law enforcement officers are required to observe your actions to ensure they receive an accurate reading. If they notice that you were hiccuping, belching, or vomiting before your test, they should wait at least 20 minutes before administering a breathalyzer test. If they fail to do so, it will result in an inaccurate reading.

One of the most common breathalyzer errors is when law enforcement officers administer a test and there is residual alcohol in your mouth. In some cases, you still may have traces of alcohol in your mouth. If this is the case, the residual alcohol in your mouth will result in your blood alcohol content registering higher than is correct. Moreover, to many people’s surprise, the temperature of your breath at the time of the test can also affect whether law enforcement officers receive an accurate reading. According to research, the machine is calibrated to test the breath at 34 degrees centigrade. However, it was found that at the time of DUI arrest,  people’s breath temperature is closer to 35.5 degrees centigrade. Ultimately, this means a breathalyzer test can register 10-20% higher readings when the temperature of your breath is 35.5 degrees centigrade.

All of the above factors can make a significant difference in your DUI case. If you have been charged with a DUI, it is in your best interest to retain a skilled Bergen County DUI attorney. Our firm is prepared to raise relevant defenses to help you achieve the best possible outcome.