Many jurors, and incredibly DUI attorneys, wrongly believe that blood tests are conclusive and invulnerable to attack. In truth, blood tests are susceptible to contamination, fermentation, or a breakdown in established procedure. A skilled DUI attorney will highlight errors which compromised the integrity of blood test results, and by extension, the suitability of those results as evidence in support of a DUI conviction.
Blood tests can be compromised in a variety of ways. Sometimes hospital staff will use an alcohol swab to sterilize the puncture site. Other-times the phlebotomist will not have properly mixed the blood with anticoagulant and preservative chemicals. More commonly, blood tests are subject to attack on the grounds that the blood sample itself fermented inside the vial producing alcohol. Contact a DUI attorney to learn more about which DUI defense you will use to attack the results of your blood test.
A DUI lawyer can investigate your blood test to determine whether the test was carried out in an appropriate manner. If the testing procedure was incorrect or otherwise compromised, the results may not accurately reflect your blood alcohol concentration. To contact a Sacramento DUI attorney first call Sacramento Law Group at (916) 596-1018.
Alcohol Swab Used Before The Blood Test
An alcohol swab should not be used to sterilize the puncture site before drawing blood for the purpose of blood alcohol testing. If alcohol is used to sterilize the puncture site the blood alcohol test may be comprised and its accuracy subject to attack by a DUI attorney. The California Code of Administrative Regulations recognizes as much as Section 1219.1(c) regarding Blood Collection and Retention states “Alcohol or other volatile organic disinfectant shall not be used to clean the skin where a specimen is to be collected. Aqueous benzalkonium chloride (zephiran), aqueous merthiolate or other suitable aqueous disinfectant shall be used.” The regulation is designed to enhance the accuracy of blood alcohol testing by establishing a procedure that prohibits the use of alcohol swabs to disinfect as an alcohol swab will increase the alcohol on the skin which in turn can increase the alcohol on the surface of the syringe and by extension the alcohol in the blood sample.
Hospital staff, apart from phlebotomists, are more likely to use an alcohol swab to disinfect the area before drawing blood for a blood test.