In South Carolina, drivers give implied consent to submit to breath tests when asked to do so. The state allows an investigating officer or an officer who may take a driver into custody to conduct such testing. However, this is only the case when the test is being videotaped. Although tests are to be done as soon as practicable, there is no statute of limitations on when a test may be conducted.
Residents of South Carolina who have been charged with DUI may have their cases delayed due to damage to evidence caused during a storm. The South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) reported that the server that stores videos of drivers taking breathalyzer tests and other data related to arrests was damaged by a lightning strike. State law requires video of breath tests of those facing drunk driving charges, and this evidence is often used by both prosecution and defense attorneys.
South Carolina residents might be interested to hear that now there are blood alcohol testers on the market that allow the common person to test his or her own breath. At one time, electronic equipment to test a person's blood alcohol content level came in the form of $10,000 machines that required special training to operate. However, nowadays such equipment can be purchased for merely $30 and easily operated without any special training.
A South Carolina municipal judge said that a breath test could not be used as evidence in a court case because the police officer who administered it reportedly gave incorrect instructions during the test. Datamaster is the only machine that police officers can use when giving breath tests in South Carolina, and according to an instructional video, users should not be instructed to blow hard. A police officer reportedly told the person being tested several times to do just that.The Datamaster works by using infrared lights to absorb air that comes out of someone's mouth. How the light absorbs the air is determined by its contents, and the amount of ethanol from alcoholic beverages can be measured. Since the most accurate readings come from deep lung air, officers are instructed to tell people to take deep breaths and blow as long as they can. Because the machine expects a continuous exhalation, blowing harder may produce higher results.
In South Carolina, police and prosecutors take all drunk driving charges seriously--even if a driver is barely over the legal limit and it is his or her first offense. This is why it is always important to seek information about your legal rights after a DUI arrest.