1st Time DUI, 2nd Time DUI Or More

DUI Field Sobriety Exercises: Understanding and Navigating DUI Field Sobriety Tests


When you find yourself pulled over by the police under suspicion of driving under the influence (DUI), you might be asked to submit to Field Sobriety Exercises (FSE), also known as Field Sobriety Tests (FST). These standardized tests are designed to assess a driver’s sobriety and can play a crucial role in a DUI case. In Tampa, Florida, and across the United States, there are a few common tests that officers administer to determine if a driver is impaired. This article explores what Tampa DUI Field Sobriety Exercises are, the most frequently used tests, and how to navigate them when ordered or “asked” to submit by law enforcement.

Discover what Tampa DUI Field Sobriety Exercises entail, including the One Leg Stand, Finger to Nose, and Walk and Turn tests. Learn how to handle these standardized tests when ordered or requested by the police.
Discover what DUI Field Sobriety Exercises entail, including the One Leg Stand, Finger to Nose, and Walk and Turn tests. Learn how to handle these standardized tests when ordered or requested by the police.

Understanding Field Sobriety Exercises

Field Sobriety Exercises are a set of physical and cognitive tests administered by police officers during a traffic stop when they suspect a driver of being impaired due to alcohol or drugs. These tests are designed to evaluate a person’s coordination, balance, and cognitive abilities under the influence. The results of these exercises can provide officers with evidence to support a DUI arrest.

Common Field Sobriety Exercises

In Tampa, as in most parts of the United States, there are a few Standardized Field Sobriety Exercises that law enforcement commonly uses. Here are the most frequently encountered tests:

1. One Leg Stand Test

In the One Leg Stand test, the driver is asked to stand on one leg while lifting the other leg approximately six inches off the ground. They must count aloud for a specified duration, typically around 30 seconds. The police officer observes the driver’s balance and ability to follow instructions.

2. Finger to Nose Test

The Finger to Nose test assesses a person’s coordination and ability to follow instructions. The driver is required to tilt their head back and close their eyes while attempting to touch the tip of their nose with their index finger. This test helps officers evaluate a driver’s motor skills and concentration.

3. Walk and Turn Test

The Walk and Turn test involves walking a straight line, heel-to-toe, for a certain number of steps, typically nine. After reaching the last step, the driver must turn and walk back in the same manner. Officers observe a driver’s ability to follow instructions, maintain balance, and walk a straight line.

4. Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus

While not a physical exercise, the Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (HGN) is an eye test that involves tracking an object’s movement with the eyes. When a person is impaired, their eyes may exhibit involuntary jerking movements (nystagmus) when tracking an object. The presence and extent of nystagmus can indicate impairment due to alcohol or drugs.

5. Reciting the Alphabet

In Florida, police officers may also ask drivers to recite the alphabet, either forwards or backwards, as part of the sobriety testing process. Difficulty in reciting the alphabet or mistakes can be considered as indicators of impairment.

If you need legal assistance, don’t hesitate to reach out to W.F. “Casey” Ebsary Jr today at 813-222-2220.


Handling Field Sobriety Exercises

If you are pulled over and asked to submit to Field Sobriety Exercises, it’s essential to remain calm and cooperate with the officer. Here are some tips to navigate these tests:

1. Be Polite and Cooperative

Maintain a respectful and cooperative attitude throughout the encounter. Being rude or uncooperative can potentially worsen your situation.

2. Know Your Rights

You have the right to remain silent and not incriminate yourself. You can politely inform the officer that you choose not to answer questions that may be self-incriminating. However, refusing the actual sobriety tests can lead to legal consequences.

3. Pay Close Attention

Listen carefully to the officer’s instructions, and if you don’t understand something, don’t hesitate to ask for clarification. It’s crucial to follow the instructions precisely.

4. Stay Calm and Composed

Nervousness is common when dealing with law enforcement, but it’s essential to stay as calm and composed as possible. Avoid unnecessary fidgeting or erratic behavior.

5. Perform to the Best of Your Ability

If you choose to participate in the Field Sobriety Exercises, do your best to perform them as accurately as possible. However, remember that these tests can be challenging even for sober individuals, and the results are subjective.

6. Document the Encounter

If you have concerns about the legality of the stop or the conduct of the officer, the encounter may be recorded by law enforcement. it’s a good idea to document the encounter by writing down details afterward.

When to Seek Legal Counsel

If you are arrested for DUI based on the results of Field Sobriety Exercises, it is essential to seek legal representation immediately. An experienced DUI attorney can help evaluate the circumstances of your case, challenge the admissibility of the test results, and build a defense strategy tailored to your situation.


Understanding Tampa DUI Field Sobriety Exercises and how to handle them is vital when faced with a DUI investigation. While these tests are designed to detect impairment, they are not foolproof, and their results can be subjective. Cooperation with law enforcement is important, but so is knowing your rights and being aware of how to navigate the situation effectively. If you find yourself in a DUI situation, consider consulting with a qualified DUI attorney to ensure your rights are protected and to explore potential defense strategies.


Can you get a DUI on a lawnmower in Florida? Dashcam Video

Lawnmower DUI Video

Can you get a DUI on a lawnmower in Florida?

Yes – You certainly can get a DUI on a lawnmower in Florida. W.F. “Casey” Ebsary, Jr. just obtained some interesting dash camera video of a nicely-equipped lawnmower that was stopped by a DUI investigator in Florida. Watch this “tricked out” lawnmower with patio umbrella for shade get pulled over.

2018 Florida Statutes 316.193 | Driving Under the Influence

  1. A person is guilty of the offense of driving under the influence and is subject to punishment as provided in subsection (2) if the person is driving or in actual physical control of a vehicle within this state and:
    1. The person is under the influence of alcoholic beverages, any chemical substance set forth in s. 877.111, or any substance controlled under chapter 893, when affected to the extent that the person’s normal faculties are impaired;
    2. The person has a blood-alcohol level of 0.08 or more grams of alcohol per 100 milliliters of blood; or
    3. The person has a breath-alcohol level of 0.08 or more grams of alcohol per 210 liters of breath.

Some people mistakenly think that they can drive a lawnmower, golf cart or bicycle while impaired. On the contrary, the Florida DUI law uses the term “vehicle.” Then Florida Statues define vehicle broadly and easily include cars, lawnmowers, golf carts, bicycles, tricycles, motorcycles.

VEHICLE.—Every device in, upon, or by which any person or property is or may be transported or drawn upon a highway, except personal delivery devices, mobile carriers, and devices used exclusively upon stationary rails or tracks.

2018 Florida Statutes 316.003 (99) Definitions

If you have a DUI you need an attorney. If this is your first DUI, you may want to read more.

Don’t unwittingly think that as long as you stay off of the roads you can travel around impaired. Florida has more than 65,000 square miles of water. There are also Boating DUI laws (The 2018 Florida Statutes 327.35).

1st Time DUI, Commercial DUI, Underage DUI

First-Time DUI Diversion

Why Start New First-Time DUI Diversion (RIDR)?

New First-Time DUI DiversionHillsborough County has consistently been ranked the worst or near the worst in Florida for DUI crashes, injuries, and fatalities. Given the dangers of impaired driving and the importance of reducing recidivism to promote long-term Community safety, the Hillsborough County State Attorney’s Office has established the reducing impaired driving recidivism initiative. The program seeks to aggressively target and reduce impaired driving by imposing enhanced sanctions like alcohol monitoring devices and DUI education programs on first-time, non-aggravated DUI offenders. This First-Time DUI Diversion program also promotes consistency in the prosecution of DUI cases by eliminating the incentive for offenders to refuse to provide a breath sample during the investigation.

Who Is Eligible for First-Time DUI Diversion Program?

To be eligible for the First-Time DUI Diversion program, first, the case must be a misdemeanor DUI. There can be no children in the vehicle. Also, the breath alcohol concentration must be below .200% and there cannot have been a crash. Additionally, there cannot be a prior DUI alcohol-related reckless driving, driving while license suspended with serious bodily injury or death, leaving the scene of an accident with injury or death, or vehicular homicide charges in the driver’s past. Finally, there cannot have been a prior DUI diversion program, more than one non-DUI diversion program as an adult, or in the five years prior to the date of offense the driver cannot have had a prior adjudication withhold or any portion of a sentence on a felony.

What Is The Process For Selecting Cases In This DUI Diversion Program?

The state attorney’s office will evaluate all cases on an individual fact-specific basis. The state attorney’s office solely determines the individual’s eligibility for the RIDR First-Time DUI Diversion Program. There will be three sanction levels for eligible cases. Level one cases will have a breath level below .15%. Next, Level two will have breath alcohol levels above .15% but less than .20% or there has been a refusal to provide. Last, Level 3 will be for drug-related DUIs.

Why Would Someone Want To Accept A Plea Offer Under The New DUI Program?

Mainly the driver will be offered a reduced charge of reckless driving and withhold adjudication. There will be 12 months probation. Individual must pay standard court costs and cost of supervision. They will have their vehicle immobilized for 10 days. The first-time DUI offender cannot possess or consume alcohol, illegal drugs, or non prescribed drugs during that 12 month period. Also, the offender must successfully complete the DUI school and any recommended treatment.
1st Time DUI, Breath Test Over 08

Reducing Impaired Driving Recidivism – Established DUI Diversion

DUI Diversion Program

Established DUI Diversion Programs
Established DUI Diversion Programs in 8th, 9th, 11th, 13th Circuit Courts

The Office of the State Attorney, 13th Judicial Circuit just developed their own DUI Diversion Program. Therefore, we will look at some of Florida’s already established DUI diversion programs. The 8th, 9th, 11th & 15th Circuit Courts all use DUI Diversion for a driver’s first DUI charge. Furthermore, each Circuit Court has different admission rules and distinct program requirements. Update: This Hillsborough County program started March 1, 2018. You can read about what the state’s attorney is looking for, what you might need to know, who is eligible and why you might want to be a part of this program.

Admission Requirements Are Confusing

First of all, some of the confusion of this process is shown below. Since each county has developed their program independently, the demands on the DUI driver differ. Therefore for help, call (813) 222-2220. In Orange and Osceola Counties, only legal U.S. residents can join the DUI Diversion Program. As a result, a tourist, a foreign national or someone on an F1 student visa charged with a DUI could never enter the DUI Diversion program in the Ninth Circuit Court. In Miami-Dade County, there is no upper limit on your breath alcohol concentration (BAC) to make you ineligible. But that same county requires that you sign a statement of guilt before entering. Three of the Circuit Courts (8th, 11th, and 15th) will refuse your admission if a child or animal was with you in the vehicle at the time of the charge. Another difference is that only the 8th Circuit Court will use drunken aggression as a reason to deny your access to the program.


Admission Qualifications of Established DUI Diversion Programs in Florida By County

1st Time DUI, Expert Attorney WF Casey Ebsary Jr

Reducing Impaired Driving Recidivism – RIDR

Reducing Impaired Driving Recidivism - RIDR
RIDR A New Hillsborough County DUI Initiative

We just found out from Rena J. Frazier, Chief of Policy and Communication in the Office of the State Attorney 13th Judicial Circuit, “The State Attorney’s Office is commencing a new DUI initiative called Reducing Impaired Driving Recidivism (RIDR), aimed at reducing impaired driving through enhanced sanctions. RIDR will become effective on March 1, 2018.”

Reducing Impaired Driving Recidivism – RIDR

Program To Help Reduce Repeat DUI Offenders

This is breaking news. At this point, this is all we know. This includes all of Hillsborough County. Recidivism is the likelihood of a convicted criminal to carry out another crime. The new policy hopes to lessen the chance of the driver ever getting a second DUI.

This change in policy is important for drivers charged with their 1st DUI. According to Florida law, pretrial intervention programs can are available for a first time DUI driver as long as they have spoken with a lawyer, agrees to complete the program, waives the right to speedy trial, and the victim, the state, and the judge have all agreed.