If a driver is pulled over on a routine drunk-driving stop in the state of Georgia and the police officer suspects impairment, field sobriety tests can be conducted. The person driving the vehicle has the option to do simple physical or cognitive tests to demonstrate sobriety. The National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) guidelines were created to help make these exercises more accurate. They are now called ‘standardized field sobriety tests.
THE GENERAL TESTS ADMINISTERED ARE THE FOLLOWING:
- The one-leg stand
- Walk and turn, and
- Horizontal gaze nystagmus test.
OFFICERS MAY, HOWEVER, ALSO ADMINISTER NON-STANDARDIZED TESTS, WHICH MIGHT INCLUDE:
- Stand with feet together and tip the head backwards
- Count the number of fingers that the officer raises
- Recite the alphabet or a portion of it
- Count backwards
- Rhomberg stationary balance test: the driver stands, feet together, and leans the head back to look up at the sky while holding their arms out to the side
- Finger-to-nose: this requires the driver might to close his or her eyes and bring the finger around to touch the nose
- Hand-pat test: the driver is asked to extend a hand in front, palm upwards. The other hand is then placed on top of the first hand, palm downwards. The driver then ‘pats’ the lower hand with the upper hand by rotating it, so that first the lower hand is patted with the palm of the upper hand and then with the back of the upper hand.
If you’ve been involved in a DUI stop in Georgia and need immediate assistance, contact the DUI attorneys at Thomas & Willis at 404-250-1113 to setup a free case evaluation.