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What should you know about field sobriety tests?

North Carolina has a number of laws that determine how drivers get handled when under the influence. First, there are tests an officer may ask you to take. The officer then uses the results to determine if they should arrest you on suspicion of DUI.

Accordingly, field sobriety tests are most likely the first test an officer will give you. But what exactly are field sobriety tests?

What are standardized field sobriety tests? looks at all types of field sobriety tests. The two main categories are non-standardized and standardized. Non-standardized tests are not as common because they do not have a unified measurement system. Because of this, the results do not hold a lot of weight in court. The opposition can easily argue that results were due to officer bias rather than blood alcohol content (BAC) level.

What do these tests check?

Standardized field sobriety tests do have a uniform rubric that officers across the country must use. There are only three types of standardized field sobriety tests, too. They include the horizontal gaze nystagmus, the walk-and-turn and the one-legged stand. The latter two checks for balance and coordination. The first checks for a waver in your eyes when you move them. This waver is present at all times, but becomes more prominent after consuming alcohol.

Regardless of which field sobriety test you take, the officer may follow it with a different test. This is because field sobriety test results alone are not enough to use as evidence against you for DUI related crimes. As such, they may ask you to take a blood or breath test afterward.