Factors that can impact Breathalyzer accuracy

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If you are a college student or resident of California, and you have the unfortunate experience of having a law enforcement official stop you who believes you have been drinking and driving, you probably know just how unnerving this is. In addition to the emotional toll receiving such a charge can take on you, you may also have to worry about possible jail time, fines and, potentially, whether your charge will affect you academically.

Given how high the stakes are when you are facing a DUI charge and just how important the results of your breath test are, you want to have complete faith in its accuracy. Breath tests are not, however, immune to error, and while some errors can result from Breathalyzer maintenance or administration, others stem from environmental factors. So, if you are facing a California DUI charge, know that the following have the potential to throw off your breath test results:

Improper calibration

Authorities must regularly calibrate breath test devices in order for them to produce accurate results. Improper calibration is one of the most common reasons Californians have their DUI charges dismissed. Breathalyzers are also highly sensitive to temperature, so the temperature of the air or the internal temperature of you, the test subject, can also affect accuracy.

Electronic factors

Electronic factors that are present when you take your breath test also have the capacity to affect results. For example, if the law enforcement official has a police radio operating in the background, know that this may affect your breath test results. Other types of electronic interference, such as cellphone towers and signals, can do the same.

While these are two of the more common factors that throw off breath test results, other things, such as having blood or vomit in your mouth during testing, can do the same. If you have any concerns about your breath test results proving inaccurate, it may benefit you to investigate further, because the repercussions associated with a DUI conviction are no joke.