Field sobriety tests determine the impairment of a driver. Due to the consequences of failing a field sobriety test, some people feel they can finesse their way out it, or even trick it, while the authorities administer the test.
One of the problems with trying to trick a field sobriety test is that it can result in inadvertent denial of addiction. This denial causes an individual to find detours around actual addiction recovery, so they don’t have to face it. Doing so may even escalate their addictive tendencies. Trying to find a way around it should inform someone that their trickery efforts are doing more harm than anything else.
If you, or someone you love, are struggling with passing a field sobriety test and want to find a way to prevent this situation from happening, contact us today. Our recovery specialists will help you find the resources you need for treating your alcohol or drug misuse the correct way instead of taking the risk of receiving a DUI. Call us at 626-602-2966 today. We want to help you live a safe and happy life.
A field sobriety test’s primary goal is to eliminate the likelihood of something tragic, whether minor or fatal. Continue reading below to learn more about field sobriety tests. You may also click a link to jump to that particular section:
Understanding Field Sobriety Tests
The National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration developed the field sobriety test in the 1980s to aid officers in determining drivers’ intoxication levels.
There are three steps during a field sobriety test with instructions given by an officer. These instructions emphasize specific movements that show impairment.
The walk-and-turn test involves nine steps forward in a straight line, heel to toe, and then back again the other way.
The officers look for:
- Begining before they finish the instructions
- Being unable to keep balance while listening to the instructions
- Not touching heel-to-toe
- Losing balance while turning
- Stopping while walking to regain balance
- Taking an incorrect number of steps
- Using arms to balance
One-Leg Stand Test
This test requires standing with one leg six inches above the ground, and counting from 1,001, until the officer tells you to lower your leg.
The officers look for:
- Hopping to maintain balance
- Putting your foot down
- Swaying while balancing
- Using arms to balance
Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus
The horizontal gaze nystagmus test involves observing the twitching of eyeballs.
If you fail any of these tests, then they will suggest a breath or chemical test to confirm the level of impairment.
Tricking a Field Sobriety Test
Trying to finagle your way out of a field sobriety test isn’t the smartest idea. If an officer pulls you over for what they suspect to be drunk driving, then doing your best to complete the test correctly is the best way to pass a DUI test.
There are a lot of myths that claim to help people pass their sobriety tests. For example, some of the ways that many individuals think they will be able to trick their way through a field sobriety test include:
- Sucking on pennies: Believe it or not, this urban legend has been circulating for some time, but has no merit whatsoever.
- Covering up the “smell” of alcohol : While alcoholic beverages often have a typical odor, ethanol is odorless. Chewing gum may cover up the smell of beer when talking to an officer. But it won’t trick a Breathalyzer.
- Breath mints, breath spray, or mouthwash: As stated above, there is no way to mask a breath sample by covering up its odor. However, mouthwash or breath spray containing alcohol could increase your estimated BAC.
- Drinking large amounts of coffee or water : Additional fluids will not adequately dilute the alcohol in your bloodstream. It takes time to metabolize alcohol. Coffee, while it may help you be more alert, will not lower your BAC.
- Eating food : A common assumption is that eating food will help absorb alcohol, but this won’t affect alcohol already in the bloodstream and measured through the breath.
- Hyperventilating or holding your breath before blowing: This theory has some merit, but it would have to be done precisely and immediately before giving a sample. The officer would witness this.
- Burping: People often believed that this would skew results, but we have debunked this claim.
Despite the claims about passing a sobriety test, they are still myths. If you are struggling with your sobriety, and want to start receiving treatment, then contact us today. Our specialists will work with you to help you start living your healthiest life.
Field sobriety tests keep drivers safe by weeding out and apprehending drivers who risk themselves and others’ lives. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, “almost 30 people in the United States die in drunk-driving crashes — that’s one person every 50 minutes.”
Sometimes, people who drink and drive don’t consider that they may be dealing with an addiction. Instead, they would like to deem themselves as “master drivers” or “having enough experience to hold their liquor and be careful.” Not everyone who drinks and drives has an addiction. However, it may indicate unsafe drinking habits that could lead to harm.
The truth is that it doesn’t matter how experienced you think you are, or even how okay you feel. If you are drunk, you shouldn’t be driving. The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism states that “an estimated 88,0005 people (approximately 62,000 men and 26,000 women) die from alcohol-related causes annually, making alcohol the third leading preventable cause of death in the United States.” On top of that, about 14.4 million U.S. adults have Alcohol Use Disorder.
Alcohol isn’t the only substance that puts drivers at risk while intoxicated. The CDC reports that other substances cause severe dangers to drivers.
Drugs other than alcohol, both legal and illegal, are involved in about 16% of motor vehicle crashes.
Marijuana use is increasing. Additionally, 13% of nighttime and weekend drivers have marijuana in their system. Users were about 25% more likely to be in a crash than drivers with no marijuana use evidence. However, other factors, such as age and gender, may account for the increase of crash risks among marijuana users.
Considering the chance that you might have an addiction, then getting help can be the stepping stone you need to pull away from taking these risks.
Prevention and Identifying Addiction
Being open to the thought that you might have an addiction can go a long way when it comes to passing future field sobriety tests. There were 33,654 fatal motor vehicle crashes in the United States in 2018. Adding to that number isn’t worth it. Fortunately, we can help you prevent this.
Signs of Addiction
It can be difficult, but it is imperative to notice the signs of addiction. For example, some of the symptoms of addiction might include, but are not limited to:
- Driving or using heavy machinery
- Borrowing or stealing money to pay for drugs
- Hiding drug use or the effects it has on you from others
- Having trouble getting along with co-workers, teachers, friends, or family members
- Sleeping too much or too little
- Eating a lot more or a lot less than before
- Changes in appearance
- Losing old friends and having a new set of friends
- Going to more than one doctor to get prescriptions for the same drug or problem
- Looking in other people’s medicine cabinets for drugs
- Taking prescriptions with alcohol or other drugs
Staying mindful of your substance use will help prevent a possible addiction. Some of the ways to avoid being pulled over to take a field sobriety test include:
- Selecting a reliable driver
- Using public transportation
- Booking a hotel or sleeping over
- Hiding or taking a drinking person’s keys
- Drinking alternative drinks such as water or soda
- Making sure you don’t have an empty stomach before drinking
- Cutting off the alcohol after a certain number
- Calling someone you trust to pick you up
Let us help you prevent further addiction. Contact our experts today, and we can help you start on the road to recovery.
Help is in Reach
To summarize, passing a field sobriety test can be daunting, especially when you know you’re drunk. Getting arrested and losing your driver’s license are some consequences that await if you cannot pass a field sobriety test.
Reaching the point of acceptance and looking for more information to prevent, or break free, from addiction can also be an overwhelming task. There are plenty of options to choose from that will teach you how to avoid being in a position where you could receive a DUI.
However, if you feel like you need help, reach out to us. The resources from our recovery specialists will put you in the right position to overcome your addiction. We can put you on the path to an addiction-free lifestyle where you do not have to think about trying to figure out different ways of passing a field sobriety test.
A Helping Hand Is Here.
Recovering Help In Pasadena CA
Your road to addiction treatment recovery starts Here. 24/7 Treatment Monitoring.