What can cause false positive breath test results?

| Nov 13, 2020 | Blood Alcohol Tests |

No system is 100% infallible, including field sobriety tests. Breathalyzers used to test motorist intoxication levels are often accurate, but they can return false-positive results in some situations. As you might expect, a false positive can land you in a police station even when you are innocent.

Many people arrested in New Bedford, Massachusetts, for intoxicated driving fail to adopt a serious approach to OUI defense. Drivers who were sober at the time of the traffic stop often feel sure that they can avoid a conviction.

Although it is possible to prevail, especially with professional legal guidance, most would rather avoid an arrest altogether. Learning why false positive Breathalyzer test results occur could help you when a police officer gives you a field breath test.

Often, substances that you ingest or put in your mouth may affect a Breathalyzer test, including:

  • Mouthwashes that contain alcohol
  • Foods prepared with alcohol
  • Ripe fruits
  • Minty gum and breath spray
  • Protein bars
  • Bread and pastry products
  • Energy drinks
  • Foods containing vanilla extract
  • Hot sauces
  • Fermented foods and drinks
  • Cold and flu medicines containing alcohol

If you have ingested any of the items above, be sure to tell the police officer administering the Breathalyzer test. Having this statement on the record is vital if the officer decides to arrest you.