Walk and Turn | Field Sobriety Test | Riley & Wells | Attorneys At Law

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Walk And Turn

Alcohol is a depressant that slows down your body’s central nervous system. This is known to cause an inability to keep your balance. If you are stopped for DUI in Virginia, then the police officer may have you perform a field sobriety test known as the 9 Step Walk and Turn.  This field sobriety test is approved by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Prior to administering the test, the Officer must first demonstrate what he or she wants you to do. If you are over 65 years old or are more than 50 pounds over weight, then the officer should not administer this test as part of testing protocol. Also, if you have a physical disability, then you should not perform this test.

The 9 Step Walk and Turn test is a divided attention test designed to see if you can follow instructions as well as perform the tasks required. The Officer will instruct you to walk nine steps, heel to toe, on either a line or an imaginary line, turn on a pivot, then walk back nine steps heel to toe on the same line. This test must be performed while keeping your arms by your side at all times and while counting each step out loud.

The Officer will be looking to see 1) if you can keep your balance while listening to the instructions, 2) if you start the test when told to do so, 3) if have to stop walking to maintain balance, 4) that each step is heel to toe, 5) if you stepped off the line, 6) if you used your arms for balance, 7) if you took the wrong number of steps, 8) if you lost your balance during the pivot, 9) or if you cannot complete the test. If the officer observes two of these clues, then you have failed this field sobriety test.

Walk and Turn


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