You go out to eat, and they have mouthwash in the restroom. You’re on a date, so you use some and feel grateful that they provided it for free. You pay the bill, hop in your car and then get pulled over as you leave the parking lot when you roll through a stop sign.
The officer asks you if you have been drinking and then administers a breath test. You take it, assuming you will pass and you can get on with your night. But you fail. What happened?
It may be the mouthwash. Experts note that you can fail that breath test after using it, and the effect lasts for roughly 10 minutes. The problem is simply that the mouthwash itself has alcohol in it, and that residual liquid is still in your mouth when you blow into the device. It sometimes picks it up in far greater amounts than would show up if you actually drank one alcoholic drink at dinner.
Now, you may not even go over the legal limit of 0.08. In one test, the first reading came in at 0.073. However, you can get a DUI without going over the legal limit if the police officer thinks that the alcohol noticeably impaired your ability to operate a motor vehicle. After all, you did run that stop sign when you were starting to leave the restaurant.
Do you think that you have been given a drunk driving charge in error, when there is really a reasonable explanation? If so, it is very important that you understand all of your legal options.
Source: Whitening Teeth Help, “Can Using Mouthwash Make You Fail A Breathalyzer?,” accessed June 01, 2018