If a person is arrested for drink driving, there are 3 standard categories which they can be placed into. These categories are low range, high range and mid-range.
However, it is possible for that category and the roadside reading to which it is associated, to be inaccurate scientifically.
There is growing authority to state that it is possible for a person who has been charged with roadside drink driving to have their reading amended. Also, in more extreme matters for the charge to be withdrawn. The way that this comes into practice is as follows:
- A person consumes alcohol and then begins to drive.
- A person is pulled over roadside and breathalysed with a return reading that is over the legal limit.
- The person is charged and formally breathalysed at the police station which produces a Schedule 3 Certificate (the Schedule 3 Certificate is what is relied upon in Court for the formal reading).
What we can do?
What is missing from this and what legal practitioners are able to assist with is advising client’s that have been charged with prohibited concentration of alcohol. There are outside factors that can affect the alcohol reading in your breath which can then create a biased result for the formal blood alcohol reading.
In the event that a person consumes the last beverage right before driving, that alcohol is understandably still inside the mouth of the driver. If the alcohol is still in the mouth of the driver and has not been processed by the body and therefore not in the bloodstream, this will mean that the blood alcohol limit is lower then what is read in the breathalyser.
Here at Adams & Partners we have had matters whereby we refer clients to well respected medical specialists who are able to provide a report with respect of what the more accurate blood alcohol reading is. Once the medical specialist provides the evidence to outline the amended blood alcohol limit, we provide representations to the police with respect of this evidence. This evidence is then either accepted by the police the blood alcohol limit is amended and therefore the charge is either amended or withdrawn where relevant.
In the event the police do not accept the representations then the Court has the ability to determine whether the expert evidence provides sufficient doubt for the charge at a hearing. If you are charged with drink driving in any form, it is important to obtain legal advice with respect of not only your prospects of maintaining your licence, fines, terms of imprisonment, interlock programs or the like it is important to obtain legal advice with respect of whether or not the procedure has been accurately undertaken by the police and whether there are any available options to yourself with respect of the reading that was obtained.
If you have any questions with respect of drink driving please contact Adams & Partners today.
Written by Lauren Hitchen