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Driving on Michigan’s roads can be daunting, especially when you factor in bad weather, construction and distracted drivers. However, one particular problem, drunk driving, can make the state’s roads even more hazardous. The Macomb Daily reported that Michigan’s drunk driving fatalities rose in 2018, with over 300 people dying in alcohol-related crashes. Traffic stops and DWI checkpoints may curb some incidents of drunk driving; however, some sobriety tests, such as the breathalyzer, may not always be accurate. If you get pulled over on suspicion of drunk driving, there are a few factors that may cause a false positive on this test.

Some medical issues could change the results of a blood alcohol breathalyzer test. For example, if you have type 2 diabetes, a condition called ketosis could create blood alcohol in your system, even if you have not been drinking. During this process, high blood sugar can cause glucose to ferment. As a result, your breath might smell of alcohol and could register a false positive result on the monitor. You may want to inform the arresting officer that you suffer from ketosis if you get pulled over on suspicion of drunk driving but were sober.

Many medications, including those sold over the counter, can cause a false result on a breathalyzer test. Even hygiene products like mouthwash contain alcohol, which may be detected during a roadside check. While these amounts are usually not as high as those caused by the actual ingestion of alcoholic beverages, they may cause an initial arrest and additional urine or blood testing.

The facts above are for informational use only and should not be a replacement for legal advice.