A motorist being investigated for DUI should not consent to a blood alcohol test. My advice to anyone who reads this blog before getting arrested for a DUI, is never take a breathalyzer, field sobriety test, or any test administered by the police or any of its agents. However, most people do not realize they can decline to take the field sobriety or breath test. The police, of course, will not inform you of your right not to consent prior to taking the breath test. In fact, they will make a big show of how your license will be suspended for 90 days if you do not submit to the test.
There are different types of blood alcohol tests in Alabama: urine, breath and blood. The police use the breath test almost exclusively. If you do consent to a breath test for DUI, which is normal, most people do consent to testing, you have the right to get an independent test of your blood alcohol content. In Alabama, the police will not inform you of your right to get an independent test of your blood alcohol content. You must make the demand for independent testing yourself, and you must take the police administered test to exercise your right to independent blood alcohol testing. You will also have to make the arrangements for the independent test and you must pay all expenses. However, the police must give you reasonable access to arrange for an independent test. Their failure to provide you access to independent testing gives rise to grounds for suppression of the police administered blood alcohol testing.