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Difference Between the PAS Test and the Chemical Breath Test

The PAS Test is a standard element in every police officer’s field sobriety tool kit. By using a PAS Test, an officer can get a close approximation of a person's BAC reading. The officer would conduct this test upon pulling someone over or during some other interaction. Although the PAS is useful in that it gives officers an idea of how much alcohol is in someone's blood, the test is not entirely accurate. The PAS can actually vary by as much as 15% from that person's true BAC. Because of this, the results of the PAS are not admissible in a court of law. After comparing it with other more reliable methods, it has been demonstrated that the PAS results often show a higher BAC than what the individual actually had, thereby making it an unjust measurement of someone's level of intoxication.

A much more reliable method of finding someone's BAC is through chemical testing. This is because chemical testing takes place in a controlled environment, as opposed to roadside testing. Chemical Testing usually involves breath analysis, a blood test and or a urinalysis screening. However, even this more reliable method can be inaccurate if various factors are at play. For example, irregular breathing patterns, blood, and vomit can skew the results of the stationary breath analysis test that officers use.

The most accurate type of chemical testing is The Blood Test, but an officer typically won't use it unless he or she believes that the breath test was compromised. Blood Tests are also more expensive to process than Breath Analysis or Urinalysis. More common than Blood Tests, Urinalysis BAC Screenings are considered reliable, but a specialist must verify its results in a lab. Because chemical tests can take a much longer time to process, many jurisdictions do not rely on them.

Regardless of if you have been asked to take a PAS or Chemical Test, it is important to know that your choice to submit breath, blood or urine samples is always voluntary. No officer can coerce or otherwise force you to submit to any form of BAC screening. Refusal to take a test to measure BAC could still result in a lawful conviction for DUI depending on the circumstances of your specific case.

Avoid Bakersfield DUI Charges, Get The Right Lawyer

If you have any questions about how a PAS or Chemical Test was administered to you, call Campbell Whitten today!

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