Driving under the influence (DUI) is one of the most prevalent crimes in the United States. If you’re inebriated and you decide to sit behind the wheel and take your automobile for a spin, you’re opening yourself up to the possibility of a DUI conviction. Generally, when an individual is pulled over by a law enforcement officer and there is suspicion of DUI, the officer will perform a test to determine whether or not the individual is driving drunk. This test may include a voluntary breathalyzer test, which, if denied, will result in a one-year license suspension.
What many people in the State of Florida fail to realize is that the breathalyzer test isn’t the only surefire test to determine whether or not a person is driving over the legal limit. In some circumstances, a DUI blood test may be used instead. In this article, a DUI attorney in Tampa from The Rickman Law Firm will cover three important facts about DUI blood tests that all Floridians should be cognizant of.
Although rare, an officer may request that the driver provide a blood sample to help verify whether or not they are driving under the influence of alcohol or other intoxicating agents. Due to the efficacy of breathalyzers, this isn’t a method that is frequently employed. The most common type of DUI blood test occurs in a medical setting. Although this blood test is utilized for treatment purposes, it can also be used against you to secure a conviction.
In the majority of cases, a blood test will be performed in a medical setting. The rules and regulations governing tests for alcohol, chemical substances, or controlled substances are contained in §316.1932(1)(c) of Florida’s Implied Consent statute which states that:
Any person who accepts the privilege extended by the laws of this state of operating a motor vehicle within this state is, by operating such vehicle, deemed to have given his or her consent to submit to an approved blood test for the purpose of determining the alcoholic content of the blood or a blood test for the purpose of determining the presence of chemical substances or controlled substances…
This section establishes the rules regarding consent and blood testing. If you are unconscious, a blood test may still be administered in a medical setting (including in an ambulance).
In order for a law enforcement officer to secure and admit the results of a blood test, they must have reasonable cause to believe that a driver is operating a vehicle while intoxicated. Furthermore, the circumstances of collection must exhibit clear indication that a breath or urine test was impossible or problematic to perform. The driver must also appear at a medical facility for treatment.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.