Walk & Turn Exercise
Miami DUI Field Sobriety Tests
If you have been arrested for DUI in Miami, Fort Lauderdale or Tallahassee you most likely were asked to complete the roadside exercise called the “Walk and Turn.” A trained Miami, Fort Lauderdale or Tallahassee DUI lawyer can break down the inherent flaws in this test, and at trial nullify the testimony of the police through effective cross examination.
What is the Walk and Turn test?
The Walk and Turn test is a DUI exercise where a police officer will ask an individual that is under investigation to walk up and back on a line in order to determine their ability to balance, follow instructions and measure their impairment.
How is the Walk and Turn test supposed to be administered?
According to the NHTSA manual the Walk and Turn test should be administered in a well lit area, with a flat surface, set away from the traffic, with a thick white line on the ground to follow. The person should be asked to start on one end of the line with one foot in front of the other, and when prompted to begin to walk heel to toe 9 steps. Once 9 steps have been completed, the person should then turn back in balance and walk 9 steps once again heel to toe. The person is supposed to have flat shoes or take them off if their shoes are a hindrance to their balance.
What are the police measuring?
- 1 – Balance – If you have to put your arms out to balance, or if you fall off the line.
- 2 – Ability to follow instructions – If you follow the instructions as given to you, or if you start early, miss steps, do an improper turn, etc., these things are marked on the officer’s DUI report as a sign of possible impairment.
- 3 – The amount of space between steps. This exercise requires a heel to toe walk. If there is more than 2 inches between steps, the officer will mark that against you.
- 4 – General demeanor – Throughout the entire DUI investigation the police are taking notes on you. It is always best to react in a calm and cooperative manner if possible.
Can I fail the test?
NO – Roadside exercises are NOT TESTS. They are simply measuring devices used to try to measure potential impairment.
What if I have an injury that does not allow me to perform well?
The police are instructed to ask the individual if they have any limitations during the instructional phase.
How can a trained Miami or Fort Lauderdale DUI lawyer help me if I don’t do well on the exercises?
If your case calls for a jury trial, the trained DUI lawyers at Gilbert and Smallman will cross examine the officer on their procedure. Often times this exercise is done next to a busy roadway with cars driving by at high speeds. Often times this exercise is not done with a line on the road, but rather the police will just ask the person to walk in a straight line. The bottom line is that if these exercises are not performed in the manner in which the NHTSA prescribes, the police officer will look biased in front of a jury for making assumptions about impairment, when in fact, they haven’t done their job correctly. We are able to turn the tables on the police and put them on trial.
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It is your liberty and license at stake, and we take that very seriously. Please visit our case victories to see some of the success we have had on DUI cases in the past. We offer free consultations and payment plans to those in need. Get in contact with an experienced Miami, Fort Lauderdale or Tallahassee DUI lawyertoday. We answer our phones and are happy to speak to you about your case.
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