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Problems With Sobriety Tests You Might Not Know

Drunk driving is still common despite efforts to discourage this behavior. The police need efficient ways to find drunk drivers and prove their illegal activity in court. When they can’t prove it,it makes it simple for a good [dcl=6959] to build a powerful defense.Two types of test are mainly used for this purpose: the breath analyzer test and the field sobriety test. The first uses an apparatus to obtain a quantitative proof of alcohol consumption. The second uses a set of simple instructions to determine levels of motor control,comprehension,and other signs of sobriety. Accuracy is way below 100% for the latter. There are many flaws limit usefulness.

1. The tests assume perfect health.

One of the problems with sobriety tests is that they always assume perfect health. Consider the one-leg test wherein the driver must stand on a single leg. It is supposed to check a person’s ability to balance himself. Yet this requires a significant amount of leg strength and stability. A lot of people can fail to perform this not because they are drunk but because they have physical impairments. Their joints may not be able to bear the load because of old age,excessive weight,or previous injuries. They might have an ear problem that affects their sense of balance.

2. The tests are highly subjective.

It is difficult to determine passing or failing when you cannot really quantify performance. Police officers will have to judge the drivers based on their appreciation of what they see. It is a highly subjective exercise. A strict officer might end up penalizing someone that another officer is likely to let off the hook. Rigorous training should be able to improve the uniformity in their judgments,as well as clear guidelines on how to conduct and assess these examinations. Still,personal bias can creep in and skew the results.

3. The tests fail to consider other factors.

They rely heavily on comprehension. A non-native English speaker may not be able to understand the words clearly. The communication gap may lead to a wrongful arrest. There is definitely a need for more accurate,scientific,and impartial tests to be conducted in addition to sobriety testing.

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