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Article 22 Breathalyzer tests

1. Tests to detect possible alcoholic intoxication will be carried out by the agents in charge of traffic surveillance and will normally consist of the testing of exhaled air by means of officially-authorised ethylometers which will measure the level of alcohol in the drivers’ breath.

In Spain, there are two different portable models of certified breathalyzers – one for cars and another one for motorcycles, which is smaller and more manageable.

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At the request of the interested party or by order of the judicial authority, the tests may be repeated for the purposes of contrast, which may consist of blood, urine or other analogous tests (article 12.2, second paragraph).

One of the rights that the driver has when tested positive on the blood alcohol test is to go to a health centre or hospital to check the results of the test by means of blood, urine or other tests. It may be required by the health centre for the blood test to be paid for in advance, which amount will be reimbursed to the driver by the Jefatura de Tráfico (traffic authority) in the case of it not showing positive.

2. When the persons to be tested have suffered injuries, ailments or illnesses whose seriousness does not allow the tests to be carried out, the medical staff of the medical centre to which they are sent will decide which tests to carry out.

If the driver of a vehicle involved in an incident is transferred to a medical centre with symptoms of having consumed alcohol and if the breathalyzer test could not be administered due to the person’s injuries, the police may request the medical staff to take a blood sample to find out their blood alcohol level.





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