Failure to provide a breath sample / specimen penalty offence.

Section 7(6) Road Traffic Act 1988 states that a person who, without reasonable excuse, fails to provide a specimen when required to do so in pursuance of this section is guilty of an offence.

Breath test

Defence cases include:

- The statutory procedure was not carried out correctly.
- Reasonable excuse for failing to provide.

Any such excuse must arise from a physical or mental inability to provide the sample requested. Examples include (1) chronic asthma or other physical condition which results in loss of lung capacity, (2) mental disability, (3) Needle phobia (blood samples). Often medical evidence will need to be obtained to support the defence case.

Penalty:

The maximum fine is £5,000.00. Alternatively, a community order or up to 6 months’ imprisonment can be imposed.

The minimum disqualification is:

- 12 months or
- 2 years where there has been two or more disqualifications for periods of 56 days+ in preceding 3 years or
- 3 years where there is a conviction for a relevant offence in preceding 10 years.

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