Researchers in Sweden say they have developed a commercial breath testing device that can detect up to 12 different illegal drugs, reports Drugfree.org.
Currently, law authorities at the scene of a drunk driving incident use a blood alcohol device that can detect alcohol only. Police do not have a simple device that will allow them to test for other drugs (marijuana, cocaine, etc.) at the scene. As a result, police often rely on other evidence against a driver suspected of drugged driving such as erratic driving, blood shot eyes, strange behavior, having drug paraphernalia in the car, before having the opportunity to conduct a blood test at the station.
But with a portable device that can detect drugs in someone's system, police would be armed with a more accurate tool to determine what drug a suspected drugged driver is using.
The Swedish device was able to detect 12 different substances, including methadone, amphetamine, methamphetamine, 6-acetylmorphine, morphine, benzoylecgonine, cocaine, diazepam, oxazepam, alprazolam, buprenorphine and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC aka marijuana) reports the Journal of Breath Research. The device was tested on individuals recovering at a drug addiction clinic and was able to detect drug use for someone who used drugs in the last 24 hours.
However, the device is far from perfect, detecting drug use in only 87 percent of the cases. While this percentage may seem high, it also leaves plenty of room for error.
Police use a variety of tools and evidence in helping them determine that someone is driving under the influence. However, none of these tools are fool-proof. For example, Breathalyzer tests need to be properly calibrated. And the Swedish drug test apparently has a 13-percent failure rate.
With the help of a Seattle DUI attorney, you may have a viable defense to a drunk driving charge even if you fail a breath test, field sobriety test, this new Swedish drug test, or any other test.
If you have a question about a drunk driving charge in the Seattle area, contact Wolff Criminal Defense. We are experienced and recognized DUI defense lawyers and can help you defend the charge or work on a favorable plea deal. Contact us one of the attorneys directly at 425-284-2000 to schedule a free initial consultationconsultation.