Florida DUI Blood Test

In DUI cases, the prosecution needs to prove that the suspected drunk driver had a blood alcohol content of 0.08% or higher when he or she was behind the wheel. Law enforcement uses one of three chemical tests to determine a driver’s BAC: a blood test, a breath test or a urine test. Breathalyzers are commonly used in DUI stops to test a driver’s blood alcohol content, however a breathalyzer is not always convenient or possible. In these cases, blood tests are used to determine a driver’s BAC.

When Are Blood Tests Used?

Blood tests are often administered in drunk driving situations that involve injury and hospitalization. If the driver is sent to the hospital after an accident and the staff finds that his blood alcohol content is at or above the legal limit of 0.08%, the police must be notified. Similarly, blood tests will be used in cases where a driver is unconscious after an accident. If the driver has caused an accident that resulted in death or serious injury, police may use “reasonable force” to require the driver to submit a blood sample.

Challenging Blood Test Results

The procedure for collecting and analyzing a blood sample is multi-faceted and must be followed to the letter. The medical professional or police officer that draws the sample must properly sanitize the driver’s skin using an alcohol-free wipe. Immediately after it is gathered, the sample must be stored with a certain amount of anticoagulants and preservatives. The sample must then be properly transported to the lab for testing. 

It is essential that every step in the “chain of command,” from the time the blood was drawn until it is tested at the lab, is correctly and thoroughly documented. Your defense attorney will examine every aspect of your blood test to ensure that each step in the process was followed completely. Even one error on the part of law enforcement, medical personnel or the testing lab, could alter the results of your test and could be grounds to have your test result deemed inadmissible.