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Is a blood alcohol test always accurate?

On Behalf of | Nov 25, 2019 | Firm News |

When residents in Rhode Island get pulled over and are suspected of driving while under the influence, they will likely be subjected to a number of tests designed to see whether or not they really have been driving while under the influence. Among those tests are ones that may involve your blood being drawn, which are purportedly the most accurate. But just how accurate are they really?

FindLaw takes a look at some of the frequently asked questions related to blood alcohol content level testing. When it comes to the different types of tests, drawing blood directly is considered the most accurate method of measurement. However, it can still have its flaws.

Some flaws involve human error. For example, blood samples can be left out for too long, causing the blood to begin coagulating or rotting. This can result in a falsely high read. Additionally, laboratories, where these samples are tested, are often swamped with different samples. It isn’t impossible for your blood sample to accidentally be switched out with someone else.

On top of that, there is the delayed effect that alcohol has on the blood stream. It is entirely possible that your blood alcohol content when getting your blood drawn is actually higher than it was while you were driving. If this is the case, then technically you would not have been breaking any laws by driving under the legal limit.

These are important things to keep in mind for anyone facing a DUI related charge, as it shows that even the most accurate tests have their limits.