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How can you challenge a Breathalyzer’s results?

On Behalf of | Aug 16, 2021 | DWI

Driving while intoxicated (DWI) is never a good idea, and a conviction comes with severe consequences. Besides a license suspension or a fine, a DWI conviction in New York can earn you a jail term as well as other restrictions on your freedom. 

When you become a licensed driver in New York, the state’s “implied consent” law requires you to submit to Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) test if the law enforcement officer has reasonable cause to believe that you are driving while intoxicated. Breathalyzer tests are often critical pieces of evidence during a drunk driving trial — but that doesn’t mean that the test results are always valid. An incorrect test result can lead to unfair charges, so it’s wise to consider challenging them.

Here are three ways you can challenge the results of a  Breathalyzer test:

Poor calibration or maintenance of the device

The accuracy of a Breathalyzer device depends on proper calibration. Extended periods of inactivity can affect the device’s sensor resulting in inaccurate BAC results. Thus, you can successfully challenge the outcome of the Breathalyzer result if there is no record of device calibration or maintenance. 

A malfunctioning or defective device

A Breathalyzer is a complex device. A small defect can result in a malfunction and an inaccurate BAC result. You can explore the possibility of challenging the evidence produced against you on grounds of device malfunction. 

Improper administration of the test

A Breathalyzer device is only as good as the person who operates it. If the test was not properly administered, that can lead to inaccurate and misleading readings that say you’re intoxicated when you really aren’t.

Facing drinking while intoxicated charges in New York can feel hopeless — especially if the Breathalyzer result is against you. However, this should never prevent you from confronting and fighting the charges.