OVI Breath Tests in St. Clairsville
When facing suspicion of OVI (Operating a Vehicle Impaired), it’s crucial to understand the implications of agreeing to a breath test with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 percent. St. Clairsville-based OVI lawyer, Sean Logue, acknowledges that such results can be used against you in court, irrespective of your level of impairment. The law strictly prohibits driving with a BAC at or above .08 percent, and county or municipal attorneys are likely to prosecute regardless of actual impairment. Additionally, the Bureau of Motor Vehicles may administratively suspend your license based on your BAC level.
In Ohio, driving with a BAC of 0.08 percent or higher is unlawful, carrying augmented penalties for BACs exceeding 0.17 percent. Regardless of your physical abilities affected by alcohol consumption, it is illegal to operate a vehicle with a BAC higher than 0.08 percent.
Driving under the influence of alcohol, to the point of impaired abilities, can result in an OVI charge. However, refusing a breath test implies automatic OVI charges as consent is assumed unless proven otherwise.
When stopped by police officers suspecting impairment, they may request a breath test using approved devices such as BAC Datamaster, Intoxilyzer 5000, or Intoxilyzer 8000, as specified by the Ohio Department of Health. Police cruisers also contain handheld portable devices referred to as PBT, which provide roadside indication of probable cause for arrests. Although these portable test results are inadmissible as evidence, prosecutors might present them during initial hearings to establish the officer’s determination of probable cause.
Improving content quality aims to engage readers and provide comprehensive information regarding OVI and related procedures in Ohio.
There are different variations of Operating a Vehicle Impaired (OVI) related to blood alcohol concentration (BAC). One variation applies to BAC levels from 0.80 percent to 0.17 percent, while another applies to BAC levels of 0.17 percent and above, known as a “high test” or “high tier” OVI. These variations are referred to as “per se” OVIs. Each per se charge carries mandatory penalties.
St. Clairsville’s Breath Test Machines: How They Work
When a suspected drunk driver undergoes a breath test, they are instructed to breathe into a machine. The device contains a chamber that collects their breath and emits infrared light through it. On the other end of the chamber, a sensor measures alcohol molecules. Alcohol has a predictable rate of infrared radiation absorption, known to scientists and the manufacturers of breath test machines. The sensor measures the amount of infrared radiation absorbed and calculates the blood alcohol content.
Breath Test Rules, Regulations, and Laws
Ohio law addresses breath tests in the Revised Code Section 4511.19(D)(1). This section outlines the statutes, regulations, and rules governing breath tests and the admissibility of breath test evidence in trials. According to the law, breath tests must be conducted within three hours of the initial police stop; otherwise, the evidence becomes inadmissible. The Ohio Department of Health oversees the maintenance, inspection, and calibration of breath test machines. They also issue licenses or permits to individuals responsible for operating the machines and maintaining records. While defense attorneys can challenge the accuracy of individual test results, they cannot question the validity and reliability of the machines themselves.
A failed breath test does not necessarily indicate a conviction. St. Clairsville criminal lawyer Sean Logue possesses extensive knowledge and experience in OVI defense. For expert assistance, please contact him at (330) 992-3036.
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