If a police officer in Connecticut suspects that you are driving under the influence, they will stop your car and ask you to take a breathalyzer test. If the machines read anything above 0.08 BAC, they’ll arrest you using that result as evidence. However, you can always challenge the results of the breathalyzer test in court.
Breathalyzers can give false-positive results
Like all the other machines, breathalyzers are also susceptible to errors. For instance, if you took the test too quickly after drinking, the alcohol might not have had time to be fully absorbed into your bloodstream yet. This would make your breath more alcoholic than your blood, and the machine would give you a false-positive result.
Medical conditions like diabetes or acid reflux can also give wrong results. Acid reflux can push alcohol up from your stomach and into your mouth, where it will be picked up by the breathalyzer. Diabetes and ketoacidosis can also cause inaccurate readings by making your breath more alcoholic.
Cold medicines, cough syrups, and some prescription drugs all have alcohol in them and can give a false-positive result. Taking one of these before driving could make the breathalyzer show that you’ve been drinking even if you haven’t had a drop of alcohol.
There are also some police officers who don’t calibrate their machines correctly or who don’t follow the proper procedures when administering the test. In this circumstance, it might be helpful to be aware of your rights as a driver in Connecticut so as to know when they are being violated.
Challenging your results in court
If you think that your breathalyzer test results are inaccurate, you might be able to challenge them in court. Some acceptable grounds include:
- Unreliable machine
- The test was illegal
- The officer that conducted the test wasn’t qualified to do so
- The officer that conducted the test missed the hearing
- Pre-existing conditions like diabetes, acid reflux, etc.
You should also know that you can refuse a breathalyzer test during a stop and request a blood test in Connecticut. This can be especially important if you’ve taken medicines or have a condition that might give false results.