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3 factors that can influence breath test device accuracy

On Behalf of | Jan 18, 2023 | Drunk Driving Charges

When a Pennsylvania law enforcement official pulls you over and charges you with driving under the influence, you may face serious consequences if convicted. In court, one of the most compelling forms of evidence that may come into play are the results of the breath test the law enforcement official made you take at the scene.

Per BACtrack, there are several ways for authorities to get a sense of your degree of intoxication, and a blood test is the most accurate method of doing so. However, blood tests may prove tough to administer, so breath tests are more common. However, breath test devices and the people administering the breath tests are not immune to making mistakes, and when a breath test result is incorrect, you may face severe repercussions as a result. Some people facing DUI charges had their charges dismissed after demonstrating that one of the following factors impacted the accuracy of their breath test results.

1. Administrator errors

A breath test device is not particularly tough to administer, but if the officer who does so makes a mistake, it has the potential to throw off the results of the test.

2. Calibration errors

Breath test devices require regular calibration and maintenance to produce accurate readings. If this does not occur when necessary, the results of the test may lack merit.

3. Environmental factors

Certain environmental factors, among them certain chemicals or fumes, also have the capacity to throw off breath test device readings.

While administrator errors, calibration errors and environmental factors may offset the accuracy of a breath test device, this is not a complete list of all variables that might impact device accuracy.