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3 factors that can reduce the accuracy of chemical breath tests

On Behalf of | Sep 15, 2021 | Criminal Defense |

Chemical or physical evidence seems like the most compelling and trustworthy evidence for criminal proceedings. Many movies and television shows that talk about crime make physical evidence seem irrefutable. 

People put a large amount of faith in physical or chemical evidence without realizing that the systems used to gather and analyze it are often flawed. Chemical breath tests often seem like irrefutable evidence that someone was drunk at the wheel. 

However, many different outside factors can influence the accuracy of chemical breath test results.

The food that you eat

If you have a somewhat unhealthy diet, you might be in the early stages of developing type 2 diabetes and not even know it. That might mean that your body enters the state of ketoacidosis, which could produce a false positive on a chemical breath test even if you have had nothing to drink. It’s possible for those who carefully control what they eat to have the same issue arrived if they follow a keto diet.

The medications that you use

Certain medications, like cough syrup, may include alcohol in them and could produce inaccurate test results in some cases. Still, you don’t have to have a cold for the medication you take to affect a breath test. Different medications, like certain asthma inhalers, can create false-positive results on a breath test.

The maintenance and calibration of the device

Scientific testing units cannot return accurate results as the people using them operate them improperly, don’t calibrate them regularly or fail to maintain them. People sometimes realize the issue only after reviewing records about the device’s maintenance or the officer’s training. 

Identifying possible reasons for inaccurate breath test results can help you fight back against a possible impaired driving charge.