In Virginia, officers sometimes use field sobriety tests during DUI checks. These tests are a tool that help them determine if a driver is driving under the influence. They are versatile and used in many different situations.
Today we will talk about field sobriety test basics. This includes the difference between standardized and non-standardized tests. It also includes why field sobriety testing is prominent. This is in spite of it not being 100 percent accurate.
Standardized field sobriety tests
FieldSobrietyTests.org has any information you could want on these tests. For example, they discuss standardized field sobriety testing in detail. Officers use standardized field sobriety tests more than non-standardized ones. Why is this? Because standardized tests follow a rubric across the board. The courts consider results from these tests much more objective. As evidence, it stands up to scrutiny better than non-standardized tests.
There are only three types of standardized field sobriety tests. They include the one-leg stand, the walk-and-turn and the horizontal gaze nystagmus. Each test checks a person’s coordination. It also checks their ability to follow instructions.
What comes after field sobriety tests?
Field sobriety testing is often a first line of testing. An officer implements this if they want to check someone’s potential sobriety levels. If a person is on the fence, they may ask for other tests. This includes breath and blood analysis tests. These are more invasive. They also take more time. This is why field sobriety testing comes before anything else.
It is important to know that failed field sobriety tests cannot do much harm on their own. At most, prosecutors may rely on them to support other evidence of a DUI. In this way, field sobriety tests are not the most worrisome part of DUI screenings. This is also important to understand.