State Legislators Consider Breath Test Bill for Texas DWI

Under current Texas DWI law, a motorist is required to provide a breath or blood sample to test for blood alcohol content after causing an accident involving death or serious injury. State lawmakers are contemplating a measure that would make it mandatory to submit to a test in more arrest situations.

Senate Bill 261 calls for the expansion of the requirement to submit to a chemical test in driving incidents involving any injury that results in medical care; a DWI suspect with a child in the vehicle; a motorist with a prior felony DWI conviction; and a motorist with two or more DWI convictions.

During testimony before a Senate committee is was noted that more than half of TX DWI suspects refuse to submit to a breath or blood test. According to prosecutors, that makes a conviction for driving while intoxicated in Texas more difficult because law enforcement officers must request a warrant to for a blood test which can takes hours and therefore potentially lower the blood alcohol content reading.

Required blood draw is a tool being used increasingly by law enforcement agencies across Texas to fight DWI. Police stopping motorists suspected of drunk driving in Austin have conducted three controversial

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