When the police in New Jersey suspect you of drunk driving, they perform several standard field sobriety tests to determine whether there is probable cause to arrest you (and whether you are indeed intoxicated). One of them is the One Leg Stand (OLS) Test. This test is common in DUI stops, but can be failed for a number of reasons other than intoxication.

How is the One Leg Stand Test Conducted?

In this test, you are instructed to stand with one foot approximately six inches off the ground and count aloud by thousands (i.e. One thousand-one, one thousand-two, etc.) until told to put your foot down. The officer times you for 30 seconds. During this time he looks for four indicators of impairment, including

  • swaying while balancing
  • using arms to balance
  • hopping to maintain balance, and
  • putting your foot down.

How Do I Know If I Failed the Test?

Research done by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) indicates that 83 percent of individuals who exhibit two or more such indicators in the performance of the test will have a BAC of 0.08% or greater.

However, other conditions can cause a bad result with this test, such as a knee or hip injury, dizziness, or other problems with balance or coordination. An officer should ask you if you have any conditions that could interfere with the test.

So What Do I Do?

The outcome of your field sobriety test, and how it was conducted, is critical to your DUI case. You need an experienced lawyer to review the video and determine if the test can be used to beat the charge.

So, if you have been charged with drunk driving in Burlington, Camden, Gloucester, Salem or Cumberland County, please feel free to call me at 856-432-4113 or contact me through this site to schedule a free consultation.

If you are looking for more information on New Jersey's drunk driving law, then download my free book, How Much Trouble Am I In? A Guide to New Jersey Drunk Driving Law.

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Steven J. Richardson
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Bankruptcy, Collections, Student Loan, DUI and Traffic Court attorney in Woodbury, NJ.