Portable Breath Test for Marijuana on the Way?

The State of Washington has long had an ability to legally test a person’s breath for alcohol. Now it is searching for ways to test a person’s breath for Marijuana. Currently a team at Washington State University is feverishly working to develop a breath test that could quickly determine whether a driver is under the influence of marijuana.

Drivers impaired by marijuana have become an increasing concern in Washington State since Washington voters legalized recreational use of marijuana in 2012; Initiative 502 set 5 nanograms of active THC per milliliter of blood as the legal limit at which a driver is automatically determined to be impaired. It is claimed that a quarter of blood samples taken from Washington drivers in 2013 came back positive for pot.

Most likely any marijuana breath test obtained from a suspected impaired driver won’t be able to pinpoint the actual level of THC in the driver’s body; it will only be able to tell officers that some active THC is present in the driver’s breath. Regardless, getting a breath sample will still be helpful to officers in deciding whether to arrest a suspected impaired driver. Law-enforcement agencies, however, would still have to obtain follow-up test results (blood test) to use as evidence in court, just as they do after a positive preliminary breath test for alcohol impairment.

Be smart when arrested for DUI. Immediately seek the assistance of a Seattle DUI lawyer. A qualified and trained Seattle DUI attorney will sift through the myriad and numerous defenses in a Washington DUI case. So if facing a DUI, do not go it alone, and do not just hire some ‘general’ practitioner. Washington DUI laws are far too complicated for any ol’ attorney to handle. Be smart … hire a qualified and skilled Seattle DUI attorney when arrested for DUI in Washington State.

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