Usually when I get this question, the person asking has already either taken or refused. Monday morning quarterback time: "should I have blown?" The answer depends on you and whether you hope to keep your license. 

First – a few words about drinking and driving. In 1999 the government reports there were 42,000 traffic deaths. Of those, thirty-eight percent (38%) were alcohol related.  That means that roughly 16,000 people lost their lives due to drinking and driving, and that number is nothing compared to the countless injuries resulting from the same cause. So the breathalyzer is the most common test for determining whether you have an alcohol concentration that evidences driving under the influence. In Idaho (and every other state) it is illegal to be in physical control of a motor vehicle with an alcohol concentration of .08%.  So should you take the test if you have been stopped while driving and are suspected of driving impaired?

Unless you will be well over the limit, my opinion is that you should take the test. If you refuse, the penalties increase both with the court system and through the Idaho Department of Transportation. On a first refusal you can generally kiss your privilege to drive in Idaho "good-by" for a year. And that means no driving at all – not to the store, to see your kid’s play at school, to church, to work or anywhere else. So you should only even consider refusing the test if you will be many times over the limit and you know it.

Of course if you are many times over the limit and you know it, you likely have a bigger problem. 

But back on the topic – your actual level of intoxication may be different than the reading on the breathalyzer. It is not fool-proof and it is subject to attack at trial. A blood test is more accurate and I think that evidence is far more reliable so if your level is close and you can get a blood test, do so.

If you refused the test, your case at trial and before the Idaho Department of Transportation is likely more difficult and your options fewer than had you blown. So do not blow it again – get a lawyer. There are actions that you should take to protect your future, because the inability to drive for a year or more can seriously impact on employment and family relationships. 

My best advice is to call a cab or let someone who has not been drinking take you home AFTER JUST ONE DRINK. You may think you are fine to drive, but that is the power of alcohol, it lets us believe we are just fine when the evidence tells everyone around us that we are drunk. Don’t get fooled by yourself into believing you are sober. Call a cab.