Category Archives: Breath Test

Can Body Temperature Affect Your Breath Test Results?

Posted on May 2, 2012   |   by Lundin Law PLLC

Washington State DUI laws provide that the test of a DUI suspect’s alcohol level will be done by taking a sample of breath, and generally not blood.  However, breath alcohol content and blood alcohol content can be different, especially when a person’s body temperature is elevated.

When one drinks, the alcohol is absorbed by the body and eventually gets into the bloodstream. That same alcohol gets into the breath of a person through the interaction of the lungs and the bloodstream. It is a well known fact, however, that body temperature affects how much alcohol is passed from the blood to the breath. For instance, if a DUI suspect drank enough beer to produce a  blood alcohol reading of .07 (under the legal limit) you would think that the breath alcohol reading would be .07 as well. If the subject had a fever, however, the breath alcohol reading would be higher, perhaps over the .08 legal limit. This is not a theory but it is a scientific fact.

How Many Drinks Is Too Many To Drive?

Posted on May 2, 2011   |   by Lundin Law PLLC

Clients often ask us, “How much is too much to drink before getting behind the wheel?” Unfortunately, our answer is always “It’s complicated.”

The simple answer is that “too much” is the amount that causes a breath test reading of .08 or more within two hours of driving. This is the clear cut standard set by law under RCW 46.61.502.

But how is a driver to determine whether he or she is .08 or higher before driving? The fact is that there is no practical way to make this determination with precision.

A New Breath Test Machine for Washington State

Posted on July 7, 2010   |   by Lundin Law PLLC

Washington State is slowly moving forward with Draeger 9510plans to deploy new DUI breath testing machines. The state has already purchased a number of machines, the Draeger 9510, and is in the process of testing them before deploying them to be used in actual DUI arrests. The state is buying new breath test machines because the machines currently in place (known as DataMasters) are old technology, out of warranty, and are wearing out.