MI DUI Charges – Acid Reflux Can Cause Breathalyzer Tests To Register False Results

Anytime a motorist is pulled over on suspicion of drunk driving, they will likely be asked to submit to several field sobriety tests, including a breathalyzer which measures the blood alcohol content a person has in their system. In the state of Michigan, if the blood alcohol content registers over 0.08, a motorist is considered to be intoxicated, and will be arrested for driving under the influence. The number registered by the breathalyzer tests is almost always used in court against the driver, as sufficient evidence that the person was drunk.

Ask any experienced drunk driving lawyer in Michigan–there are many factors that can cause the breathalyzer test to register false or inaccurate results. Not only can the breath machines malfunction, but certain medical conditions, such as acid reflux, can cause inaccurate readings.

According to Michigan DUI experts, if a person suffers from GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease) you could be subject to far more aggravation then poor breath and terrible heartburn. Regurgitation from the reflux can send the contents from one’s stomach to their mouth. Therefore, if a person with acid reflux had one drink, their mouth could literally become contaminated with alcohol. When police test blood alcohol levels, the instrument chamber (meant to measure alcohol coming from the deep lung region) can become contaminated with mouth alcohol registering a much higher result than is actually true. In such a case, an innocent person would be pinned with Michigan DUI charges.

In a recent case, the accused drunk driver registered a 0.11-0.12 on the Datamaster. However, the video of the test showed that the officer stepped away from the suspect and left the room. While she was not paying attention, the person in question put his hand to his chest and over his mouth to block the smell and sound of regurgitation. According to rules governing the administering breathalyzer tests, an officer is required to watch the suspect for a complete 15 minute period to ensure that regurgitation does not occur. Fortunately, because the law enforcement official failed to do so, the accused drunk driver was found not guilty.

As seen by the incident described above, there are numerous factors that can cause a breath test to register inaccurate results. Something as simple as acid reflux can produce false data that the prosecution would hold against you in court, possibly convicting an innocent person of drunk driving. If you’ve found yourself in such a situation, it is essential to be pro-active in seeking the best legal defense for your case. By contacting hard-working DUI defense attorneys in Michigan, you will receive superior legal advice and legal representation, designed to protect your driving privileges, wallet, and freedom.

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