Alcohol testing excuses make for funny fodder

Alcohol testing will hopefully catch drink drivers before they pay the ultimate price. Credit Tobias Tullius

If you fail alcohol testing – on the roadside or in the workplace – it’s very rare for people to escape a charge or consequences. For most people, there is no excuse, but we’re glad that there are some who are willing to try.

  • Like a person in the UK, who came up with an elaborate scheme to try to escape a charge, even enlisting help from a friend. It all started when the driver crashed his car in a car park. With a witness watching, he got out of the car unsteady on his feet. A friend then arrived and took him home, telling the witness the crashed driver was a diabetic. When police caught up with the driver and conducted alcohol testing, he was over the limit. However, he claimed he had a glass of whisky when he got home to calm his nerves after his accident. No empty glass could be found, however.
  • Who needs an elaborate scheme when you can simply say, “It’s St Patrick’s Day and I’m Irish”, “I had five shots at the bar and was trying to get home before they took effect” or “Siri told me I was fine to drive”. These are all real excuses that police have heard following a failed breath test.
  • A man who police pulled over in a McDonalds drive-through was asked to undergo alcohol testing. When the test was positive, he blamed a faulty breathalyser. After being taken to the local police station, he then failed to provide a breath sample properly. The man later admitted in court that he drunk five pints of beer before hopping in his car. Yep, faulty breathalyser!
  • A young woman decided to get behind the wheel after a night out after her designated driver got drunk. She claims she tried phoning family and friends for a lift, without success. Perhaps she should have tried phoning a taxi or organising an Uber instead.

Alcohol testing fails no laughing matter

While the excuses some people come up with for failing alcohol testing warrants a laugh, there is nothing funny about people who drink and then get behind the wheel.

Drink driving remains a major contributor to fatalities and serious injuries on Australian roads, and indeed across the globe. In Australia, up to 25 per cent of fatal crashes involve drivers and motorcycle riders who have exceeded the legal limit.

In Victoria alone:

  • 1 in 5 drivers and riders killed have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) over the 0.05 legal limit. While this sounds shocking, and is, between 2008 and 2011 the figure was 1 in 3 drivers.
  • Additionally, 1 in 6 deaths have a BAC above zero but under 0.05.
  • Nearly 80 per cent of drivers drive after having one or two drinks. These people are likely to be under the 0.05 limit but may still be affected by alcohol.
  • Around 175,000 Victorians admit to driving when they are over 0.05.

While these stats can be depressing, it’s comforting to know that alcohol testing will hopefully catch people before they pay the ultimate price.


Alcohol testing will hopefully catch drink drivers before they pay the ultimate price. Credit Tobias Tullius

Alcohol testing will hopefully catch drink drivers before they pay the ultimate price.

By Michael

Michael is the founder of Integrity Sampling and is responsible for overseeing all national operations. He is based at Integrity Sampling's head office in Melbourne and is also responsible for the co-ordination of drug and alcohol testing within Victoria, assisting in the implementation of drug and alcohol (fit for work) policies and the presentation of drug and alcohol education and awareness programs. You can connect with Michael Wheeldon on LinkedIn

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