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Do you know the 3 standardized field sobriety tests?

There could come a point when you are pulled over by a law enforcement officer for suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol.

Even if you are 100 percent sober, it's possible that the officer will want to conduct a few tests to determine if you are drunk.

The Standardized Field Sobriety Test (SFST) is endorsed by the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA), meaning that most law enforcement departments use these.

Here is a breakdown of the three tests:

  • Horizontal gaze nystagmus. This test is all about measuring the jerking of the eye that naturally occurs when it moves from side to side. When a person is under the influence of alcohol, this jerking is more noticeable.
  • Walk and turn. This is a test that is typically simple for an unimpaired person to do. It requires you to take nine steps in a heel to toe manner, in a straight line. Once you take nine steps in one direction, you will turn and do the same the other way.
  • One leg stand. This is a test that most people are familiar with. The officer will ask that you stand with your foot approximately six inches off the ground. You are then asked to count to 30. Any use of the arms or swaying may indicate impairment.

While these tests are among the better ways to determine if a person has been drinking, it's not out of the question for a breathalyzer to come into play as well.

Even though these tests are endorsed by the NHTSA, it's imperative to remember one thing: They are not 100 percent accurate.

If you find yourself dealing with the aftermath of a DUI arrest, make sure you understand your legal rights and the type of defense strategy that can help you avoid a conviction.

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