The threat of an arrest for driving under the influence (DUI) is very real here in Texas. Law enforcement can be quite aggressive when stopping drivers suspected of impairment.

While everyone knows that it is unwise to drink and drive, many people have unfortunately found themselves behind the wheel after consuming one or two drinks. They didn’t feel impaired and believed they were capable of driving home safely. Yet they got pulled over on suspicion of DUI.

Don’t take roadside sobriety tests

Never believe that you don’t have options when pulled over by the police on a DUI stop. One thing that you will likely be asked to do is perform roadside sobriety tests. Below are the three most common that have the endorsement of the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA):   

  • Walk-and-turn (WAT)
  • One-leg stand (OLS)
  • Horizontal gaze nystagmus (HGN)

Many people who get stopped for DUI in Texas don’t realize that they have the right to politely refuse to do these roadside sobriety tests.

Why refusing tests is wisest

If you only had one or two drinks over several hours, there’s a good chance that you might not be legally drunk. But even with a blood alcohol concentration of less than .08%, your performance on those roadside sobriety tests could be used as evidence to convict you of DUI.

Remember that you are likely being filmed the whole time you attempt to carry out these tests. You’re likely nervous, perhaps cold or uncomfortable, maybe only a couple of feet from traffic whizzing by at high speeds. Few sober people can pass the tests under the same conditions. Forget about those with disabilities or people wearing fancy footwear; they are highly unlikely to pass.

Mitigate damage on a DUI stop

If you get stopped for DUI, don’t add to the police and prosecution’s evidence against you. Exercise your right to remain silent and build a stalwart defense against the charges.