Florida residents know that the state’s laws on driving under the influence are tough. While certainly it is important to keep people safe, it is equally important to protect the rights of everyone including those who may be accused of criminal actions. For their part, defendants must try to remember that an arrest is not the same thing as a conviction and therefore learning about their options for a defense after being charged with drunk driving is important.
Simply because field sobriety tests are administered by law enforcement officials and sanctioned for use by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does not mean that they are completely foolproof. In fact, FieldSobrietyTests.org indicates that none of the three standardized tests used are completely accurate. The most accurate of the three tests is the horizontal gaze nystagmus test which evaluates the eye’s natural jerking motion. This test is 77-percent accurate on its own.
The test that requires you to stand on one leg while counting out loud, appropriately called the one-leg stand test, has an accurate rate of only 65 percent. The walk-and-turn test requires you to take nine steps in heel-to-toe fashion one direction and back again, also while counting out loud. This test is 68-percent accurate. If all three tests are administered, the accuracy rate of them jointly is said to be 82 percent.
If you would like to learn more about the process that you might experience during a drunk driving investigation, please feel free to visit the field sobriety test page of our Florida DUI and criminal defense website.