PBT and DataMaster Testing: Crucial Elements in Minnesota DUI Cases

When a law enforcement officer in Minnesota suspects a driver to be under the influence, a PBT is often the first step in the investigative process. This field sobriety test can provide a preliminary measure of a driver’s blood alcohol content (BAC). While not as accurate as other forms of testing, PBT can assist in establishing probable cause for a DUI arrest.

Importantly, the results of a PBT are generally not admissible as evidence in a Minnesota court. This is due to their susceptibility to error, which stems from factors such as device calibration, officer training, and physiological conditions of the subject being tested.

DataMaster Testing

Once a driver is taken into custody under suspicion of a DUI, a more accurate and legally recognized test is conducted. This is often done using a device called a DataMaster. Unlike a PBT, the results from a DataMaster test are admissible in court and can be used to prove a driver’s BAC at the time of arrest.

The DataMaster, while more accurate than a PBT, is not unchallengeable. The machine requires proper maintenance, calibration, and operation to yield accurate results. Furthermore, certain factors such as mouth alcohol contamination, certain medical conditions, and the timing of the test relative to the last drink can potentially affect the results.

The legal limit for BAC in Minnesota, like many other states, is 0.08%. If the DataMaster test returns a reading at or above this limit, it forms a significant piece of evidence in a DUI case.

In conclusion, understanding PBT and DataMaster testing is crucial in navigating DUI cases in Minnesota. These tests play key roles in both the preliminary and evidentiary stages of DUI investigations and prosecutions.

Yet, as with any legal process, each case is unique and requires a comprehensive understanding of the law, scientific principles, and proper protocol. This is where the expertise of a seasoned attorney becomes indispensable. If you or a loved one are facing DUI charges, contact us today for a free consultation.