What to Do If You Are Pulled Over for Drink Driving

Posted By on February 23, 2017

Drink driving is used to describe an offence of driving when alcohol is in a person’s system. You can be charged with drink driving if you are caught driving with an amount of alcohol in your system above the legal limit. In this case, the police may stop you and require that you to undergo several tests. These tests are referred to as breath, blood, or urine tests, or a preliminary breath test.

How a BAC Reading is Used in a Drink Driving Charge

Tests provide police with a BAC (blood alcohol content) reading, which reveals how many grams of alcohol are present in 100ml of your blood. A BAC reading is used to support a drink driving charge. Therefore, the exact charge that is levelled against you depends on the amount of alcohol that appears in your system.

Driving Under the Influence (DUI)

The higher the BAC reading is, the higher the penalty for the drink driving offence. When the amount reaches 0.15 BAC or more, you are charged with driving under the influence. This type of charge can lead to imprisonment. So, if you have been charged with DUI, you need to obtain assistance from a criminal lawyer in Perth, WA immediately.

Defining Drug Driving

If you choose to refuse to undergo a test for drink driving, it is considered an offence as well. Drug driving occurs when a person operates a vehicle with an illicit drug in their system, or drives whilst impaired by drugs, regardless if they are illicit or prescribed. Driving whilst impaired also requires that you seek legal advice and assistance.

The Preliminary Test

In drink driving cases, the preliminary breath test is the first test conducted by police, and usually occurs at the roadside. If you are driving a vehicle and a police officer requests that you provide a breath sample for a preliminary test, you are required to do so under the law. Otherwise, as indicated, a refusal is considered an offence.

Follow-up Testing

If the preliminary test shows that your BAC is over the limit, you will need to take a follow-up test at the police station. This follow-up test is usually performed by a medical practitioner or a nurse. Typically, blood or urine samples are taken. In this instance, you do not have to provide a sample of blood, urine, or breath if it is over four hours after you drove. Otherwise, it is an offence to refuse the test.

Testing for Impairment

If the police ask you to take a driver assessment test to check for impairment, or ask that you take a blood or saliva test to test for illicit drugs, according to the law, you must comply. Again, you cannot refuse, or it will be considered an offence.

If you are convicted of drink or drug driving, the penalty is usually a fine and a period of licence disqualification. A licence disqualification means that you cannot drive for a specified time period. A disqualification is sometimes referred to as a suspension. For some serious drink driving offences, the resulting penalty may be imprisonment.