New York State Breath Test

Various types of breath testing machines (commonly called breathalyzers), measure a person’s blood alcohol content (BAC) by requiring an individual to breathe into a straw-like device. While the breathalyzer is the most commonly used test to establish an individual’s BAC, the breathalyzer machine, itself, is often inaccurate.

False readings can and often do occur. For example, cough syrup, mouth wash, chewing gum, and breath sprays can produce false readings. Furthermore, chemicals present in a person’s body that resemble ethyl alcohol can influence the test result. Modern machines have attempted to control these variants, but their reliability is questionable.

A person’s body temperature can also affect the breathalyzer’s reading. Breathalyzer machines are calibrated to produce alcohol readings based on the average body temperature. However, scientific evidence has shown that any subject’s body temperature varies several degrees during any given day (e.g., depending on the time of day and the level of emotional and/or physical stress the subject is under). Thus, a sick individual’s body temperature could be elevated as a result of a fever, resulting in an inaccurate breathalyzer reading.

These breath testing machines are complicated and require a certain level of maintenance to ensure they operate properly. Further, police officers are not always properly trained or informed about BAC machines. They sometimes bypass or ignore proper protocols, aimed at controlling environmental and physiological factors that could disrupt test results.

If your BAC breath test produced a result beyond the legal limit or a result that you feel is unreasonably high under the circumstances, our team of attorneys can help determine if, or the extent to which, your breath test can be used as valid evidence against you in court. Call me, Dennis Nave, today to get the help you need and deserve.