Field sobriety test accuracy problems

August 4, 2022
Field sobriety test accuracy problems

With the summer holiday season in full swing, it is common for many people in Missouri to be planning backyard barbeques, boating excursions, weddings and more. Alcohol is commonly served at these events with attendees driving themselves to and from them. This may well put more people at risk of being stopped by officers and questioned for suspected impaired driving. When this happens, they may be asked to perform certain activities. Understanding what happens at this point is important for anyone in this situation.

As explained by, the tests that law enforcement officers ask you to take if they believe you are driving drunk are not meant to prove that you are drunk. They actually are unable to do so. Instead, these tests can be used to show that you might be drunk if you cannot pass the tests. If you fail a field sobriety test, then an officer has the legal right and evidence needed to arrest you and charge you with a drunk driving crime.

It is also important for you to know that field sobriety tests are not foolproof. Their accuracy rates vary from a low of 65 percent to a high of only 77 percent individually. Even with all three tests being used the accuracy rate is only 82 percent.

If you would like to learn more about the field sobriety tests that are used in many drunk driving investigations and how their results may be faulty, please feel free to visit the roadside impaired driving testing page of our Missouri criminal defense and drunk driving website.


For personalized legal guidance, call our office at 417-882-9300 or submit this form to schedule a meeting with an attorney.

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