As someone currently facing a Michigan driving under the influence or operating while intoxicated charge, you may understand all too well just how much rides on the results of the breath test you took at the time of your arrest. Carried out with devices called Breathalyzers, breath tests give police an estimate of your degree of impairment while operating a motor vehicle, but they are not foolproof, meaning that in some cases, they can be prone to error.
So just what impacts Breathalyzer accuracy?
Administration and calibration errors
For a Breathalyzer to function correctly, it has to undergo regular calibration. An improperly calibrated device is not reliable, so you may find it advantageous to figure out when the device used to conduct your breath test last underwent calibration.
Electronic waves and signals are a regular part of life in most areas, but in some cases, electronic interference can impact your breath test results, making it appear as if you consumed alcohol before driving when you did not, in fact, do so. Electronic signals can come from any number of sources, including police radios and scanners and cellphone towers, among others.
Blood and vomit
Having certain substances, among them blood and vomit, in your mouth when authorities administer your breath test can also impact its results and make it appear as if you were drinking when you may not have been doing so. Because these substances can cause falsely elevated breath test readings, it is important that you take any breath test results you received while you had blood or vomit in your mouth with a grain of salt.
A DUI or OWI conviction can have a sizable negative impact on your life, potentially affecting everything from your freedom to your finances. If you suspect for any reason that the results of your breath test may not have been accurate, it can serve you well to investigate further.