Articles Posted in Field Sobriety Tests

On Wednesday February 18, a woman whose name was not revealed in news reports was handcuffed and taken into custody following a high-speed chase on Antelope Valley Freeway and Pearblossom Highway, according to articles at the Daily News. California Highway Patrol officers became aware of the situation after noticing the woman weaving in and out of lanes, and speeding in a Chrysler 300.

The pursuit continued for approximately 25 minutes with the woman reaching speeds of 85 mph in the northbound lanes and continuing onto streets in Palmdale before finally coming to an end near Adela Court just before 1:30 a.m.

Initially, the woman slowed down as the officer attempted to pull her over, however she fled the scene which led to the high-speed chase. Once the chase came to an end, the officer administered a field sobriety test, and took her into custody. News reports do not indicate whether the woman was arrested on suspicion of DUI, reckless driving, or another offense.

Nearly everyone has heard of field sobriety tests, regardless of whether you have been pulled over on suspicion of drunk driving.  Even those who have never faced the stress of possibly being arrested for DUI want to avoid field sobriety tests at all costs, simply because they have heard the horror stories and know that it’s possible to be arrested for something you’re not guilty of.

What you may not be aware of is that these tests, administered by police, are subject to highly unreliable results.  While no police officer would admit to someone he or she pulled over that the results of these tests are far less reliable than those of other tests such as breath or urine tests, the fact is the results are questionable at best.

The three common tests utilized in Los Angeles and throughout California each have their own inherent flaws; these tests include the one-leg stand test, horizontal gaze nystgamus, and walk-and-turn test.  Unless you are in the law enforcement or legal industry yourself or are affiliated with someone who is, you probably have no reason to know that the results these tests yield on a frequent basis are inaccurate at best.  Most drivers have no idea that the horizontal gaze nystgamus test is only 77% accurate – and it is the one of the three tests identified as the most reliable!  What does this mean for motorists?  That if stopped for suspicion of drunk or impaired driving, there is a 1 in 4 chance you will be found to be intoxicated.