Breathalysing proceedure

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Smeeagain
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Breathalysing proceedure

Postby Smeeagain » Sun Sep 18, 2016 11:52 am

Last weekend I was stopped and breathalysed by a local police car. Tgey said "someone" suggested I'd had a few to drink. As I hadnt had anything to drink for a week or more, I was more than happy for him to cobduct the test, and duly passed.
However, before getting me to blow into the machine, he asked if I had ysed any mouthwash in the last hour or so. I hadnt and confirmed this and we proceeded.
But this got me thinking about the mouthwash - did he ask because it can mess up the test and create a negative when there is a positive, or can the alcohol in the mouthwash tip you over the limit if yoh were borderline?
And lastly, he said because I passed there was no further action but do they record thst against my name/registration. None of that bothers me just curious reslly.
Smee

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angus
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Re: Breathalysing proceedure

Postby angus » Sun Sep 18, 2016 2:04 pm

The "someone suggested" is on a par with the "incident involving a car like yours" that I had some years ago. They stopped me bacause it was 2am and England had played an international that evening but couldn't say that. It's an excuse because they're not allowed to do random tests.

There is alcohol in mouthwash and they should've asked if you'd had a drink in the last 30 minutes (or something like that) as there can be residual alcohol in the mouth that can give a false reading.

I'd like to know why they have to record the stop though. Does that mean there's going to be a "potential drink driver" flag on your car?

Smeeagain
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Re: Breathalysing proceedure

Postby Smeeagain » Sun Sep 18, 2016 5:10 pm

Well I don't know if they do record it or not, that's what I was asking. After we'd sorted it all outI asked if they could tell me who reported it, fully expecting them not to tell me. It was a petrol station I'd just visited. In fact they hadnt said I'd been drinking they said I'd been unsteady on my feet (not exactly the same). As it happens I have a foot condition that means Im occasionally ubstabke when standing walking. I showed the guy my foot so he could see the problem and in the end we had a good laugh about it. I suppose its a good thing that the garage were being diligent, but equally I may simply have been handicapped or disabled (perhaps I am albeit unofficially), so maybe they should only flag up if they smell alcohol.
And yes I do wonder if I'll have a "stop me and breathalyse me" flag on my car
Smee

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dvenman
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Re: Breathalysing proceedure

Postby dvenman » Sun Sep 18, 2016 8:30 pm

angus wrote:It's an excuse because they're not allowed to do random tests.


Correct. But a police officer can stop any car at any time for a documents check, and if there's a suspicion the driver has been drinking can insist on a breath test.

Not random, but close enough for me.

sussex2
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Re: Breathalysing proceedure

Postby sussex2 » Mon Sep 19, 2016 6:49 am

dvenman wrote:
angus wrote:It's an excuse because they're not allowed to do random tests.


Correct. But a police officer can stop any car at any time for a documents check, and if there's a suspicion the driver has been drinking can insist on a breath test.

Not random, but close enough for me.


I wish there were random tests as is usual in many other countries.
The limit for drink driving in the UK is one of the highest in Europe; this lax law is often flouted because people know the chances of being caught are slim.
I've been a passenger on a bus elsewhere and the driver was flagged down for such a random test. The incident wasn't even thought remarkable by the passengers.

ps Should have said England and Wales rather than the UK as Scotland has a lower limit.

Smeeagain
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Re: Breathalysing proceedure

Postby Smeeagain » Mon Sep 19, 2016 11:01 am

Yes you are absolutely correct and I think that is bonkers - to be clear by that I mean there should be one limit for this country and that it should be the lower limit. There is a still a 'you can drive or a pint or two" myth that some folk still have. Being from Scotland myself, but residing in England currently, I know that whilst they still have drink drivers in Scotland, the 'myth' that exists now, in Scotland, is you can drink on half a pint, but in fact the majority say 'what the point in drinking half a pint?' and just don't do it. (that's all anecdotal but the way). It seems that whilst folk would previously have risked their licence for one or two pints, they are more reluctant to risk it for half a pint

But that's got me thinking, and diverging a bit from the original post, but are there any other driving laws that vary from Scotland to England/Wales (and I don't mean local bye laws)?

Matt1962
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Re: Breathalysing proceedure

Postby Matt1962 » Mon Sep 19, 2016 2:25 pm

I don't want to encourage drink driving but I think there are a lot of myths around this subject. Is there any documented evidence showing that anyone has ever failed the new Scottish breathalyser test half hour or so after drinking a pint of (normal strength) bitter? Ordered with a meal it seems unlikely that very much alcohol would be detected by the time a breathalyser test could be carried out.

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dvenman
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Re: Breathalysing proceedure

Postby dvenman » Mon Sep 19, 2016 3:09 pm

The problem, Matt, is that people's metabolisms are so different in the rate at which they metabolise alcohol, the circumstances around the consumption are different, and so many other factors, that it's much easier, in my mind, to take the path of least resistance.

Matt1962
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Re: Breathalysing proceedure

Postby Matt1962 » Mon Sep 19, 2016 3:39 pm

I don't really disagree but think that if the situation is exaggerated too much then it could have the unintended affect of giving convicted drink drivers credibility (a bit like all those 32mph speeding tickets that are supposedly issued).

Smeeagain
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Re: Breathalysing proceedure

Postby Smeeagain » Mon Sep 19, 2016 10:10 pm

Matt1962 wrote:I don't want to encourage drink driving but I think there are a lot of myths around this subject. Is there any documented evidence showing that anyone has ever failed the new Scottish breathalyser test half hour or so after drinking a pint of (normal strength) bitter? Ordered with a meal it seems unlikely that very much alcohol would be detected by the time a breathalyser test could be carried out.


I dont know the accuracy of this link, or if it is the same technology as used here in the UK, but it is interesting nevertheless. And also, you've highlighted one of the myths yourself - food does not dissipate the amount of alcohol in your system - it's still in you. And to deal with that myth, as you will see from the link, the breathalyser is just that - it is analysing your breath to extrapolate that data to an equivalent amount of alcohol in your bloodstream. That is why if you fail the breath test they then offer you (or should offer you) a blood test, which is the more accurate test. Hopefully one of our place driver friends will be along to explain shortly.

http://www.rupissed.com/breathalyser.html

And yes - it is documented that a single pint fails the breath test in Scotland

http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/674646 ... nge-UK-ban

Smee


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