Are DWI Breathalyzer Tests Always Accurate

Are DWI Breathalyzer Tests Always Accurate

Posted on : June 22, 2020

Since its inception, the breathalyzer test has become the go-to for police officers to detect the level of alcohol in a person’s blood, or their Blood Alcohol Content (BAC). But breathalyzers are machinery that have the capacity to fail. Could your breathalyzer test be inaccurate? 

The Basics of the Breathalyzer 

There are three different types of breathalyzers that can be used to determine a person’s level of intoxication. The most widely used type by police officers is called a fuel cell tester. This device works by generating electricity through a chemical reaction between the fuel cell and the alcohol in the individual’s breath. 

The more alcohol there is in the person’s body, the greater the chemical reaction, and the higher the test reading. Infrared spectrometry is a much larger device that uses molecule identification and is typically reserved for hospitals and police departments. Semiconductor testers are recommended for personal use only.

What Factors Can Compromise the Test’s Accuracy?  

When a police officer pulls you over under the suspicion of drinking and driving, there’s a certain set of rules they must follow when administering a breath test. Failure to do so can result in inaccurate results. Other things that may result in a false-positive test result include:

  • Working with certain chemicals that contain alcohol and are inhaled, like gasoline and oil-based paint
  • Having medical issues that cause a higher level of alcohol in the mouth, like GERD and diabetes or hypoglycemia
  • Having a drink and being pulled over a very short time later
  • Uncalibrated breathalyzer testing equipment

How to Defend Yourself Against Breath Test Results  

If your breath test results were over the legal limit, you may feel like there’s nothing you can do to fight what seems like hard evidence against you. However, a skilled criminal defense lawyer is able to take apart the prosecution’s case against you point by point and create doubt about the validity of the test or even the officer’s administration of the test.  

Contact Maryland DWI Lawyer Richard Brueckner Now 

DWI charges in Maryland are serious and carry harsh penalties that will affect you for the rest of your life. Don’t take any chances — reach out to an experienced Maryland DWI lawyer as soon as possible. You’re more likely to receive a favorable outcome with the help of an aggressive criminal defense attorney. Contact Richard Brueckner today for a consultation at 410-430-1464. 


Posted by: Richard Brueckner