Respected Attorneys To Protect Your Rights

What do you do during a field sobriety test?

On Behalf of | Mar 25, 2024 | Drunk Driving |

The police can stop your vehicle to conduct an investigation if they believe you are driving drunk and violating traffic laws. If the police suspect you were drunk, they may ask you to prove that you are not through a series of field sobriety tests. These tests allow the police to gather evidence that could be used against you if you are charged with drunk driving.

Field sobriety tests will have you physically moving around in a way that should be easy if you are sober. A drunk driver would likely fail these tests. There are three common field sobriety tests. Here’s what you should know:

Horizontal gaze nystagmus test (HGN)

A horizontal gaze nystagmus test will have you looking at an object, such as a finger or a pen. Keeping your head still, the police will move the object side-to-side. As they do, the police are looking to see if your eyes move smoothly and if they jerk unnaturally. Your eyes will involuntarily and naturally jerk when you look to the side. Under the influence of alcohol, your eyes may jerk a lot more.

Walk-and-turn test (WAT)

The police can ask you to do a walk-and-turn test. This involves standing on a straight line, walking several paces in one direction and walking back to where you started. Someone drunk may walk off the line or fail to follow instructions.

One-legged stand test (OLS)

You may be asked to do a one-legged stand test. The police will ask you to lift one leg slightly off the ground for several seconds. Putting your foot down, falling over or losing balance at any time during this test may cause the police to believe you are drunk.

Field sobriety tests are not always accurate. If you believe the police made a mistake during a traffic stop, then it is possible to create a legal defense.