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Many factors make it hard to pass the one-leg stand test

Like every other Port Orchard resident police pull over on suspicion of drunk driving, you will most likely have an important decision to make -- whether to participate in field sobriety tests. You know that your blood alcohol concentration can't be over the legal limit of 0.08% since you either had just one or two drinks, it has been hours since you had those drinks, or you had no drinks at all.

You want to prove that you aren't impaired, so when the officer asks you to participate in field sobriety tests, you consider doing it in order to prove you aren't drunk. However, you should probably think twice about doing so since numerous factors could make it difficult for you to pass those tests, especially the one-leg stand test. If you take the tests and fail them, you could end up under arrest for DUI or DWI. By the time you prove you aren't under the influence, you already have an arrest on your record.

What's wrong with the one-leg stand test?

Other than the fact that the officer's opinions on how you performed the test play a large role in whether you "pass" or "fail," several other factors can contribute to you failing, such as those listed below:

  • Your proximity to traffic and the noise it causes makes you too nervous to perform adequately. Moreover, you may have trouble hearing the officer's instructions, and following instructions is part of the test.
  • It is often dark when these tests occur, and the officer may have left his flashing lights on for safety. Both of these factors combined could cause you to fail the test.
  • You could have trouble maintaining your balance due to a medication, inner ear problems, an ear infection, low blood pressure or a head injury.
  • Generally, the older you are, the harder it is to maintain your balance.
  • If you have a leg, back or foot problem, standing on one foot may not be easy for you.
  • If you suffer from peripheral neuropathy from diabetes, chemotherapy, a medication, an infection or a disease, you will have a tough time maintaining your balance.
  • If you have an eye muscle imbalance or arthritis, you will most likely have trouble with your balance.

As you can see, any number of things can keep you from passing this particular field sobriety test. Even your age, weight, gender or height can make this test problematic for you. In light of this, you may want to calmly and politely decline participating in field sobriety tests, which you can do legally. The last thing you want to do is provide the officer with the probable cause needed to arrest you by failing the tests.

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