Tennessee residents who get pulled over and fall under suspicion of driving while under the influence will usually be subjected to field sobriety tests. These tests allow a police officer to determine if they should go forward with other tests, such as a breathalyzer, or if they should arrest the person in question.
If Tennessee law enforcement officials pull you over for a suspected DUI, they likely will make you take a Breathalyzer test to determine your blood alcohol concentration. But are the results of these tests really all that accurate? ProctorCars.com reports that most of them have up to a 15% margin of error. This translates into up to 23% of accused driving under the influence defendants having been the victim of an inaccurate Breathalyzer.
In Tennessee, drunk driving is also referred to as driving under the influence, or DUI. Most states set their own laws when it comes to blood alcohol concentration limits, license revocations, criminal sentences and implied consent for drivers. According to FindLaw, when a driver’s BAC is .08 or higher in the state, the driver is considered legally drunk. If the BAC hits .20 or higher, there are additional penalties for drinking and driving.
If you have been stopped by a police officer and were subsequently arrested for suspected drunk driving in Tennessee, it will be important that you learn about the different elements of your arrest and how these may help you defend yourself against the charges. One of the elements of a drunk driving investigation is the administration of field sobriety tests. These tests all have known failure or inaccuracy rates and your health may well be a contributor to your inability to pass one or more of them.
Tennessee law may require you to install an ignition interlock device under certain conditions, such as if you get a conviction for a DUI. These devices have relatively strict rules governing their maintenance, installation and use. Maintaining the device would be your responsibility, but you would not be allowed to do the repairs yourself.
If you are like many Tennessee residents, you may enjoy having drinks when going out with friends for dinner or spending a night out on the town. Traditionally, it is the rule of thumb to designate a driver to transport you safely if you plan on drinking. However, a study shows that designated drivers may not always be the safest option.
People drink for many different reasons, whether they regularly visit a local bar after work, frequently drink at home as a result of alcohol addiction or celebrate a special occasion with alcohol even though they rarely consume alcohol. Many people drink on their birthday and they may consume alcohol at their home, at a friend’s house or at a business establishment as they celebrate their birthday. Unfortunately, some decide to get behind the wheel afterward, which can result in a variety of harsh consequences. If you plan to drink alcohol during your next birthday party, or at any other time, it is pivotal to stay off of the road until you have sobered up completely.
Having a conviction for driving under the influence on your Tennessee record can have a significant impact on many areas of your life, potentially affecting everything from your bank account to your ability to find and hold down a job. On the financial side, you will need to pay fines relating to your charge, and you may, too, need to pay to have an ignition interlock device installed on your car once you get your license back, among related expenditures.
Your risk of being arrested for drunk driving does not necessarily diminish once Christmas is over. As we at the Law Office of Rob McKinney are aware, New Year’s Eve can hold more potential for drunk driving accidents and arrests than Christmas festivities. You and other Tennessee residents should take precautions to get home safely and avoid spending New Year’s Day in jail.
The first time you receive a conviction for driving under the influence in Tennessee, you can anticipate harsh penalties, but, as you might expect, the penalties you potentially face increase in severity with any subsequent DUI arrest. Therefore, if you have had the unfortunate experience of having authorities place you under arrest for drinking and driving and you received a similar conviction in the past, it is important that you recognize the magnitude of what you now face.