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What are the types of drunk driving tests?

Driving under the influence of alcohol can land you in hot water with the authorities, as police are always on the lookout for drivers who have had too much to drink.

When a person is pulled over for drunk driving, police often administer one or more field sobriety tests. These tests are meant to help determine if a person is drunk.

The National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration endorses the Standardized Field Sobriety Test, which consists of the following:

-- Horizontal gaze nystagmus

-- Walk-and-turn

-- One-leg stand

With the horizontal gaze nystagmus test, officers look for impairment in each eye, such as the inability to smoothly follow a moving object.

The walk-and-turn test is well known and commonly employed. It requires the person to take nine steps in a heel to toe manner, along a straight line. At the end, they must turn on one foot and repeat the same steps.

Finally, the one-leg stand is when a person is asked to stand with one foot off the ground for 30 seconds. The inability to balance, such as hopping, may show that a person is impaired.

All three of these drunk driving tests are used by law enforcement officials throughout the country. However, it is important to remember one thing: these are not completely accurate. There are times when the accused does not understand the test. Furthermore, the officer could make a mistake while administering the test. These are all things that should be taken into account when a person charged with DUI has his or her day in court.

Source: FindLaw, "Field Sobriety Tests," accessed April. 09, 2015

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