A breathalyzer or breathalyser (a portmanteau of breath and analyzer/analyser) is a device for estimating blood alcohol content (BAC) from a breath sample. Breathalyzer is the brand name (a genericized trademark) for the instrument that tests the alcohol level developed by inventor Robert Frank Borkenstein. It was registered as a trademark on May 13, 1954, but many people use the term to refer to any generic device for estimating blood alcohol content.
A 1927 paper produced by Emil Bogen, who collected air in a football bladder and then tested this air for traces of alcohol, discovered that the alcohol content of 2 litres of expired air was a little greater than that of 1 cc of urine. However, research into the possibilities of using breath to test for alcohol in a person's body dates as far back as 1874, when Francis E. Anstie made the observation that small amounts of alcohol were excreted in breath.
Also, in 1927 a Chicago chemist, William Duncan McNally, invented a breathalyzer in which the breath moving through chemicals in water would change color. One use for his invention was for housewives to test whether their husbands had been drinking.
In late 1927, in a case in Marlborough, England, Dr. Gorsky, a Police Surgeon, asked a suspect to inflate a football bladder with his breath. Since the 2 liters of the man's breath contained 1.5 ml of ethanol, Dr. Gorsky testified before the court that the defendant was "50% drunk".
In 1931 the first practical roadside breath-testing device was the drunkometer developed by Rolla Neil Harger of the Indiana University School of Medicine. The drunkometer collected a motorist's breath sample directly into a balloon inside the machine. The breath sample was then pumped through an acidified potassium permanganate solution. If there was alcohol in the breath sample, the solution changed color. The greater the color change, the more alcohol there was present in the breath. The drunkometer was manufactured and sold by Stephenson Corporation of Red Bank, New Jersey.
In 1954 Robert Frank Borkenstein (1912–2002) was a captain with the Indiana State Police and later a professor at Indiana University Bloomington. His Breathalyzer used chemical oxidation and photometry to determine alcohol concentrations. Subsequent breath analyzers have converted primarily to infrared spectroscopy, though this method is subject to invalid results depending on ambient air temperature, the temperature of the device, and the body temperature of the subject, depending on specificity of the readings and how they correlate with one's BAC measured via a voluntary blood draw. The invention of the Breathalyzer provided law enforcement with an orally-invasive test providing immediate results to determine an individual's breath alcohol concentration at the time of testing, based on, according to this article, consistently faulty samples.
In 1967 in Britain, Bill Ducie and Tom Parry Jones developed and marketed the first electronic breathalyser. They established Lion Laboratories in Cardiff. Ducie was a chartered electrical engineer, and Tom Parry Jones was a lecturer at UWIST. The Road Safety Act 1967 introduced the first legally enforceable maximum blood alcohol level for drivers in the UK, above which it became an offence to be in charge of a motor vehicle; and introduced the roadside breathalyser, made available to police forces across the country. In 1979, Lion Laboratories' version of the breathalyser, known as the Alcolyser and incorporating crystal-filled tubes that changed colour above a certain level of alcohol in the breath, was approved for police use. Lion Laboratories won the Queen's Award for Technological Achievement for the product in 1980, and it began to be marketed worldwide. The Alcolyser was superseded by the Lion Intoximeter 3000 in 1983, and later by the Lion Alcolmeter and Lion Intoxilyser. These later models used a fuel cell alcohol sensor rather than crystals, providing a more reliable curbside test and removing the need for blood or urine samples to be taken at a police station. In 1991, Lion Laboratories was sold to the American company MPD, Inc.
CH3CH2OH(g) + H2O(l) → CH3CO2H(l) + 4H+(aq) + 4e−
O2(g) + 4H+(aq) + 4e− → 2H2O(l)
The overall reaction is the oxidation of ethanol to acetic acid and water.
CH3CH2OH(l) + O2(g) → CH3COOH(aq) + H2O(l)
Breath analyzers do not directly measure blood alcohol content or concentration, which requires the analysis of a blood sample. Instead, they estimate BAC indirectly by measuring the amount of alcohol in one's breath. In general, two types of breathalyzer are used. Small hand-held breathalyzers are not reliable enough to provide evidence in court but reliable enough to justify an arrest. Larger breathalyzer devices found in police stations can then be used to produce court evidence.
Two breathalyzer technologies are most prevalent. Desktop analyzers generally use infrared spectrophotometer technology, electrochemical fuel cell technology, or a combination of the two. Hand-held field testing devices are generally based on electrochemical platinum fuel cell analysis and, depending upon jurisdiction, may be used by officers in the field as a form of "field sobriety test" commonly called PBT (preliminary breath test) or PAS (preliminary alcohol screening) or as evidential devices in POA (point of arrest) testing .
In Canada, a preliminary non-evidentiary screening device can be approved by Parliament as an ASD, or approved screening device, and an evidentiary breath instrument can be similarly designated as an approved instrument. The US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration maintains a Conforming Products List of breath alcohol devices approved for evidentiary use, as well as for preliminary screening use. In order to demand a person produce a breathalyzer sample an officer must have "reasonable suspicion" that the person drove with more than 80 mg alcohol per 100 mL of blood. The demand must be within three hours of driving. Any driver that refuses can be charged under s.254 of the Criminal Code. With the legalization of cannabis, updates to the criminal code are proposed that will allow a breathalyzer test to be administered without suspicion of impairment.
Most states, including California and Michigan, have implied consent laws, which means that by applying for a driver's license, drivers are agreeing to take any breathalyzer test under suspicion of a DUI.
The Preliminary Breath Test (PBT) or Preliminary Alcohol Screening test (PAS) uses small hand-held breath analyzers (hand-held breathalyzers). These units are similar to evidentiary breathalyzers, but typically are not calibrated frequently enough for evidentiary purposes. (The terms "Preliminary Breath Test (PBT)" and "Preliminary Alcohol Screening test (PAS)" reference the same devices and functions.) The test device provides numerical blood alcohol content (BAC) readings, although in some cases, the device has "pass/fail" indicia. For example, in Canada, PST devices, called "Alcohol Screening Devices (ASDs)" are set so that, from 0 to 49 mg% it shows digits, from 50 to 99 mg% it shows the word "WARN" and 100 mg% and above it shows "FAIL".
These preliminary breath tests are sometimes categorised as part of field sobriety testing, although it is not part of a series of performance tests generally with Field Sobriety Tests (FSTs) or Standard Field Sobriety Tests (SFSTs). While the test device typically provides numerical blood alcohol content (BAC) readings, its primary use is for screening and, in the US, establishing probable cause for arrest, to invoke the implied consent requirements.
In US law, this is necessary to sustain a conviction based on evidential testing (or implied consent refusal). In order to sustain a conviction based on evidential tests, probable cause must be shown (or the suspect must volunteer to take the evidential test without implied consent requirements being invoked). Police are not obliged to advise the suspect that participation in a FST or other pre-arrest procedures is voluntary. In contrast, formal evidentiary tests given under implied consent requirements are considered mandatory.
Refusal to take a PBT in the US state of Michigan subjects a non-commercial driver to a "civil infraction" fine, with no violation "points", but is not considered to be a refusal under the general "implied consent" law. In some states, the state may present evidence of refusal to take a field sobriety test in court, although this is of questionable probative value in a drunk driving prosecution.
Different requirements apply in many states to drivers under DUI probation, in which case participation in a preliminary breath test (PBT) may be a condition of probation, and for commercial drivers under "drug screening" requirements. Some US states, notably California, have statutes on the books penalizing PBT refusal for drivers under 21; however the Constitutionality of those statutes has not been tested. (As a practical matter, most criminal lawyers advise suspects who refuse a PBT to not engage in discussion or "justifying" the refusal with the police.)
Public breathalyzers are becoming a method for consumers to test themselves at the source of alcohol consumption. These are used in pubs, bars, restaurants, charities, weddings and all types of licensed events.
The breath alcohol content reading is used in criminal prosecutions in two ways. The operator of a vehicle whose reading indicates a BAC over the legal limit for driving will be charged with having committed an illegal per se offense: that is, it is automatically illegal throughout the United States to drive a vehicle with a Breath Alcohol Concentration (BrAC) of 0.08% or higher. One exception is the state of Wisconsin, where a first time drunk driving offense is normally a civil ordinance violation.
The uniformity is due to federal guidelines that states choose to adopt as motor vehicle laws are enacted by the individual states. It is said that the federal government ensures the passage of the federal guidelines by tying traffic safety highway funds to compliance with federal guidelines on certain issues, such as the federal government ensuring that the legal drinking age be the age of 21 across the 50 states. In earlier years, the range of the threshold varied considerably between States.
The breath analyzer reading will be offered as evidence of that crime, although the issue is what the BrAC was at the time of driving rather than at the time of the test. Some jurisdictions, such as the State of Washington, now allow the use of breath analyzer test results without regard as to how much time passed between operation of the vehicle and the time the test was administered. The suspect will also be charged with driving under the influence of alcohol (sometimes referred to as driving or operating while intoxicated). While BrAC tests are not necessary to prove a defendant was under the influence, laws in most states require the jury to presume that he was under the influence if his BrAC is found and believed to be over 0.08 (grams of alcohol/210 liters breath) when driving. In California, this is once again demonstrated by California Vehicle Code Section 23152(b) and Cal-Crim 2111, which states: "If the People have proved beyond a reasonable doubt that a sample of the defendant's (blood/breath/urine) was taken within three hours of the defendant's [alleged] driving and that a chemical analysis of the sample showed a blood alcohol level of 0.08 percent or more, you may, but are not required to, conclude that the defendant's blood alcohol level was 0.08 percent or more at the time of the alleged offense." This creates a rebuttable presumption, which means it is presumed, but that presumption can be rebutted if a jury finds it unreliable or if other evidence establishes a reasonable doubt as to whether the person actually drove with a breath or blood alcohol level of 0.08% or greater. This would not apply to States that have done away with the presumption, such as the State of Washington, as previously referenced.
Infrared instruments are also known as "evidentiary breath testers" and generally produce court-admissible results. Other instruments, usually hand held in design, are known as "preliminary breath testers" (PBT), and their results, while valuable to an officer attempting to establish probable cause for a drunk driving arrest, are generally not admissible in court. Some states, such as Idaho, permit data or "readings" from hand-held PBTs to be presented as evidence in court. If at all, they are generally only admissible to show the presence of alcohol or as a pass-fail field sobriety test to help determine probable cause for arrest. South Dakota had previously relied solely on blood tests to ensure accuracy, but has implemented evidential blood alcohol breath tests since Sep-2011.
Historically, states initially tried to prohibit driving with a high level of BAC, and a BrAC test result was merely presented as indirect evidence of BAC. Where the defendant had refused to take a subsequent blood test, the only way the state could prove BAC was by presenting scientific evidence of how alcohol in the breath gets there from alcohol in the blood, along with evidence of how to convert from one to the other. DUI defense attorneys frequently contested the scientific reliability of such evidence. In response, many states like California subsequently modified their BAC statutes so to directly prohibit a certain level of alcohol in the breath as an alternative to a prohibited level of BAC. In other words, the breath test result itself, the BrAC level, became the direct predicate evidence for conviction. In other states, such as New Jersey, the statute remains tied to BAC, but the BrAC results of certain machines have been judicially deemed presumptively accurate substitutes for blood testing when used as directed.
Police in Victoria, Australia, use breathalyzers that give a recognized 20% tolerance on readings. Noel Ashby, former Victoria Police Assistant Commissioner (Traffic & Transport), claims that this tolerance is to allow for different body types.
Many handheld breath analyzers sold to consumers use a silicon oxide sensor (also called a semiconductor sensor) to determine the blood alcohol concentration. These sensors are far more prone to contamination and interference from substances other than breath alcohol. The sensors require recalibration or replacement every six months. Higher end personal breath analyzers and professional-use breath alcohol testers use platinum fuel cell sensors. These too require recalibration but at less frequent intervals than semiconductor devices, usually once a year.
Calibration is the process of checking and adjusting the internal settings of a breath analyzer by comparing and adjusting its test results to a known alcohol standard. Law enforcement breath analyzers need to be meticulously maintained and re-calibrated frequently to ensure accuracy.
There are two methods of calibrating a precision fuel cell breath analyzer, the Wet Bath and the Dry Gas method. Each method requires specialized equipment and factory trained technicians. It is not a procedure that can be conducted by untrained users or without the proper equipment.
The Dry-Gas Method utilizes a portable calibration standard which is a precise mixture of alcohol and inert nitrogen available in a pressurized canister. Initial equipment costs are less than alternative methods and the steps required are fewer. The equipment is also portable allowing calibrations to be done when and where required.
The Wet Bath Method utilizes an alcohol/water standard in a precise specialized alcohol concentration, contained and delivered in specialized simulator equipment. Wet bath apparatus has a higher initial cost and is not intended to be portable. The standard must be fresh and replaced regularly.
Some semiconductor models are designed specifically to allow the sensor module to be replaced without the need to send the unit to a calibration lab.
One major problem with older breath analyzers is non-specificity: the machines identify not only the ethyl alcohol (or ethanol) found in alcoholic beverages but also other substances similar in molecular structure or reactivity.
The oldest breath analyzer models pass breath through a solution of potassium dichromate, which oxidizes ethanol into acetic acid, changing color in the process. A monochromatic light beam is passed through this sample, and a detector records the change in intensity and, hence, the change in color, which is used to calculate the percent alcohol in the breath. However, since potassium dichromate is a strong oxidizer, numerous alcohol groups can be oxidized by it, producing false positives. This source of false positives is unlikely as very few other substances found in exhaled air are oxidizable.
Infrared-based breath analyzers project an infrared beam of radiation through the captured breath in the sample chamber and detect the absorbance of the compound as a function of the wavelength of the beam, producing an absorbance spectrum that can be used to identify the compound, as the absorbance is due to the harmonic vibration and stretching of specific bonds in the molecule at specific wavelengths (see infrared spectroscopy). The characteristic bond of alcohols in infrared is the O-H bond, which gives a strong absorbance at a short wavelength. The more light is absorbed by compounds containing the alcohol group, the less reaches the detector on the other side—and the higher the reading. Other groups, most notably aromatic rings and carboxylic acids can give similar absorbance readings.
Some natural and volatile interfering compounds do exist, however. For example, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has found that dieters and diabetics may have acetone levels hundreds or even thousands of times higher than those in others. Acetone is one of the many substances that can be falsely identified as ethyl alcohol by some breath machines. However, fuel cell based systems are non-responsive to substances like acetone.
Substances in the environment can also lead to false BAC readings. For example, methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE), a common gasoline additive, has been alleged anecdotally to cause false positives in persons exposed to it. Tests have shown this to be true for older machines; however, newer machines detect this interference and compensate for it. Any number of other products found in the environment or workplace can also cause erroneous BAC results. These include compounds found in lacquer, paint remover, celluloid, gasoline, and cleaning fluids, especially ethers, alcohols, and other volatile compounds.
Breath analyzers assume that the subject being tested has a 2100-to-1 partition ratio in converting alcohol measured in the breath to estimates of alcohol in the blood. If the instrument estimates the BAC, then it measures weight of alcohol to volume of breath, so it will effectively measure grams of alcohol per 2100 ml of breath given. This measure is in direct proportion to the amount of grams of alcohol to every 1 ml of blood. Therefore, there is a 2100-to-1 ratio of alcohol in blood to alcohol in breath. However, this assumed partition ratio varies from 1300:1 to 3100:1 or wider among individuals and within a given individual over time. Assuming a true (and US legal) blood-alcohol concentration of .07%, for example, a person with a partition ratio of 1500:1 would have a breath test reading of .10%—over the legal limit.
Most individuals do, in fact, have a 2100-to-1 partition ratio in accordance with William Henry's law, which states that when the water solution of a volatile compound is brought into equilibrium with air, there is a fixed ratio between the concentration of the compound in air and its concentration in water. This ratio is constant at a given temperature. The human body is 37 degrees Celsius on average. Breath leaves the mouth at a temperature of 34 degrees Celsius. Alcohol in the body obeys Henry's Law as it is a volatile compound and diffuses in body water. To ensure that variables such as fever and hypothermia could not be pointed out to influence the results in a way that was harmful to the accused, the instrument is calibrated at a ratio of 2100:1, underestimating by 9 percent. In order for a person running a fever to significantly overestimate, he would have to have a fever that would likely see the subject in the hospital rather than driving in the first place. Studies suggest that about 1.8% of the population have a partition ratio below 2100:1. Thus, a machine using a 2100-to-1 ratio could actually overestimate the BAC. As much as 14% of the population has a partition ratio above 2100, thus causing the machine to under-report the BAC. Further, the assumption that the test subject's partition ratio will be average—that there will be 2100 parts in the blood for every part in the breath—means that accurate analysis of a given individual's blood alcohol by measuring breath alcohol is difficult, as the ratio varies considerably.
Variance in how much one breathes out can also give false readings, usually low. This is due to biological variance in breath alcohol concentration as a function of the volume of air in the lungs, an example of a factor which interferes with the liquid-gas equilibrium assumed by the devices. The presence of volatile components is another example of this; mixtures of volatile compounds can be more volatile than their components, which can create artificially high levels of ethanol (or other) vapors relative to the normal biological blood/breath alcohol equilibrium.
One of the most common causes of falsely high breath analyzer readings is the existence of mouth alcohol. In analyzing a subject's breath sample, the breath analyzer's internal computer is making the assumption that the alcohol in the breath sample came from alveolar air—that is, air exhaled from deep within the lungs. However, alcohol may have come from the mouth, throat or stomach for a number of reasons. To help guard against mouth-alcohol contamination, certified breath-test operators are trained to observe a test subject carefully for at least 15–20 minutes before administering the test.
The problem with mouth alcohol being analyzed by the breath analyzer is that it was not absorbed through the stomach and intestines and passed through the blood to the lungs. In other words, the machine's computer is mistakenly applying the partition ratio (2100:1, see above) and multiplying the result. Consequently, a very tiny amount of alcohol from the mouth, throat or stomach can have a significant impact on the breath-alcohol reading.
Other than recent drinking, the most common source of mouth alcohol is from belching or burping. This causes the liquids and/or gases from the stomach—including any alcohol—to rise up into the soft tissue of the esophagus and oral cavity, where it will stay until it has dissipated. The American Medical Association concludes in its Manual for Chemical Tests for Intoxication (1959): "True reactions with alcohol in expired breath from sources other than the alveolar air (eructation, regurgitation, vomiting) will, of course, vitiate the breath alcohol results." For this reason, police officers are supposed to keep a DUI suspect under observation for at least 15 minutes prior to administering a breath test. Instruments such as the Intoxilyzer 5000 also feature a "slope" parameter. This parameter detects any decrease in alcohol concentration of 0.006 g per 210 L of breath in 0.6 second, a condition indicative of residual mouth alcohol, and will result in an "invalid sample" warning to the operator, notifying the operator of the presence of the residual mouth alcohol. PBT's, however, feature no such safeguard.
Acid reflux, or gastroesophageal reflux disease, can greatly exacerbate the mouth-alcohol problem. The stomach is normally separated from the throat by a valve, but when this valve becomes herniated, there is nothing to stop the liquid contents in the stomach from rising and permeating the esophagus and mouth. The contents—including any alcohol—are then later exhaled into the breathalyzer. One study of 10 individuals suffering from this condition did not find any actual increase in Breath Ethanol.
Mouth alcohol can also be created in other ways. Dentures, some have theorized, will trap alcohol, although experiments have shown no difference if the normal 15 minute observation period is observed. Periodontal disease can also create pockets in the gums which will contain the alcohol for longer periods. Also known to produce false results due to residual alcohol in the mouth is passionate kissing with an intoxicated person. Recent use of mouthwash or breath fresheners can skew results upward as they can contain fairly high levels of alcohol.
Absorption of alcohol continues for anywhere from 20 minutes (on an empty stomach) to two-and-one-half hours (on a full stomach) after the last consumption. Peak absorption generally occurs within an hour. During the initial absorptive phase, the distribution of alcohol throughout the body is not uniform. Uniformity of distribution, called equilibrium, occurs just as absorption completes. In other words, some parts of the body will have a higher blood alcohol content (BAC) than others. One aspect of the non-uniformity before absorption is complete is that the BAC in arterial blood will be higher than in venous blood. Other false positive of high BAC and also blood reading are related to Patients with proteinuria and hematuria, due to kidney metabolization and failure. The metabolization rate of related patients with kidney damage is abnormal in relation to percent in alcohol in the breath. However, since potassium dichromate is a strong oxidizer, numerous alcohol groups can be oxidized by kidney and blood filtration, producing false positives.
During the initial absorption phase, arterial blood alcohol concentrations are higher than venous. After absorption, venous blood is higher. This is especially true with bolus dosing (Canadian term). With additional doses of alcohol, the body can reach a sustained equilibrium when absorption and elimination are proportional, calculating a general absorption rate of 0.02/drink and a general elimination rate of 0.015/hour. (One drink is equal to 1.5 US fl oz (44 ml) of liquor, 12 US fl oz (350 ml) of beer, or 5 US fl oz (150 ml) of wine.)
Breath alcohol is a representation of the equilibrium of alcohol concentration as the blood gases (alcohol) pass from the (arterial) blood into the lungs to be expired in the breath. Arterial blood distributes oxygen throughout the body. Breath alcohol concentrations are generally lower than blood alcohol concentrations, because a true representation of blood alcohol concentration is only possible if the lungs were able to completely deflate. Vitreous (eye) fluid provides the most accurate account of blood alcohol concentration.
A common defense to an impaired driving charge (in appropriate circumstances) is that the consumption of alcohol occurred subsequent to driving. The typical circumstance where this comes up is when a driver consumes alcohol after a road accident, as an affirmative defense. This closely relates to absorptive stage intoxication (or bolus drinking), except that the consumption of alcohol also occurred after driving. This defense can be overcome by retrograde extrapolation (infra), but complicates prosecution.
While jurisdictions that recognise absorptive stage intoxication as a defense would also accept a defense of consumption after driving, some jurisdictions penalise post-driving drinking. While laws regarding absorption of alcohol consumed before (or while) driving are generally per se, most statutes directed to post driving consumption allow defenses for circumstances related to activity not related to . In Canada, it is illegal to be over the impaired driving limits within 3 hours of driving (given as 2 hours by CDN DOJ); however, the new law allows a "drinking after driving" defence in a situation where a driver had no reason to expect a demand by the police for breath testing. South Africa is more straightforward, with a separate penalty applied for consumption "After An Accident" until reported to the police and if so required, has been medically examined.
The breath analyzer test is usually administered at a police station, commonly an hour or more after the arrest. Although this gives the BrAC at the time of the test, it does not by itself answer the question of what it was at the time of driving. The prosecution typically provides an estimated alcohol concentration at the time of driving utilizing retrograde extrapolation, presented by expert opinion. This involves projecting back in time to estimate the BrAC level at the time of driving, by applying the physiological properties of absorption and elimination rates in the human body.
Extrapolation is calculated using five factors and a general elimination rate of 0.015/hour.
There are a number of substances or techniques that can supposedly "fool" a breath analyzer (i.e., generate a lower blood alcohol content).
A 2003 episode of the science television show MythBusters tested a number of methods that supposedly allow a person to fool a breath analyzer test. The methods tested included breath mints, onions, denture cream, mouthwash, pennies and batteries; all of these methods proved ineffective. The show noted that using these items to cover the smell of alcohol may fool a person, but, since they will not actually reduce a person's BrAC, there will be no effect on a breath analyzer test regardless of the quantity used, if any, it appeared that using mouthwash only raised the BrAC. Pennies supposedly produce a chemical reaction, while batteries supposedly create an electrical charge, yet neither of these methods affected the breath analyzer results.
The MythBusters episode also pointed out another complication: it would be necessary to insert the item into one's mouth (for example, eat an onion, rinse with mouthwash, conceal a battery), take the breath test, and then possibly remove the item — all of which would have to be accomplished discreetly enough to avoid alerting the police officers administering the test (who would obviously become very suspicious if they noticed that a person was inserting items into their mouth prior to taking a breath test). It would likely be very difficult, especially for someone in an intoxicated state, to be able to accomplish such a feat.
In addition, the show noted that breath tests are often verified with blood tests (BAC, which are more accurate) and that even if a person somehow managed to fool a breath test, a blood test would certainly confirm a person's guilt.
Other substances that might reduce the BrAC reading include a bag of activated charcoal concealed in the mouth (to absorb alcohol vapor), an oxidizing gas (such as N2O, Cl2, O3, etc.) that would fool a fuel cell type detector, or an organic interferent to fool an infrared absorption detector. The infrared absorption detector is more vulnerable to interference than a laboratory instrument measuring a continuous absorption spectrum since it only makes measurements at particular discrete wavelengths. However, due to the fact that any interference can only cause higher absorption, not lower, the estimated blood alcohol content will be overestimated. Additionally, Cl2 is rather toxic and corrosive.
A 2007 episode of the Spike network's show Manswers showed some of the more common and not-so-common ways of attempts to beat the breath analyzer, none of which work. Test 1 was to suck on a copper-coated coin such as a penny. Test 2 was to hold a battery on the tongue. Test 3 was to chew gum. None of these tests showed a "pass" reading if the subject had consumed alcohol.
On the other hand, it is alleged that products such as mouthwash or breath spray can "fool" breath machines by significantly raising test results. Listerine mouthwash, for example, contains 27% alcohol. The breath machine is calibrated with the assumption that the alcohol is coming from alcohol in the blood diffusing into the lung rather than directly from the mouth, so it applies a partition ratio of 2100:1 in computing blood alcohol concentration—resulting in a false high test reading. To counter this, officers are not supposed to administer a preliminary breath test for 15 minutes after the subject eats, vomits, or puts anything in their mouth. In addition, most instruments require that the individual be tested twice at least two minutes apart. Mouthwash or other mouth alcohol will have somewhat dissipated after two minutes and cause the second reading to disagree with the first, requiring a retest. (Also see the discussion of the "slope parameter" of the Intoxilyzer 5000 in the "Mouth Alcohol" section above.)
A scientist tested the effects of Binaca breath spray on an Intoxilyzer 5000. He performed 23 tests with subjects who sprayed their throats and obtained readings as high as 0.81—far beyond lethal levels. The scientist also noted that the effects of the spray did not fall below detectable levels until after 18 minutes.
Robert F. Borkenstein, who revolutionized enforcement of drunken driving laws by inventing the Breathalyzer to measure alcohol in the blood, died last Saturday at his home in Bloomington, Ind. He was 89....born in Fort Wayne, Ind., on Aug. 31, 1912.
The Drunkometer, which used a balloon into which people breathed, was the first practical breath test to measure whether people were drunk. The device was patented in 1936.
Accordingly, all breath-testing programs require the operator or other trained individual to 'continuously' observe the subject for 15 to 20 minutes before a breath test (the exact amount of time varies among the jurisdictions). The rules typically require reasonable observation.
The 2012 Preakness Stakes was the 137th running of the Preakness Stakes thoroughbred horse race. The race took place on May 19, 2012, and was televised in the United States on the NBC television network. The post time was 6:20 p.m. EDT (10:20 p.m. UTC). I'll Have Another won the second leg of the Triple Crown, narrowly defeating Bodemeister in a last-furlong push.
The Maryland Jockey Club report a record crowd of 121,309, the second highest attendance for American thoroughbred racing events in North America during 2012.I'll Have Another became the 33rd horse to win the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes double.BACtrack
BACtrack is a brand of portable breathalyzers owned by KHN Solutions. It is headquartered in San Francisco, California.Base rate fallacy
The base rate fallacy, also called base rate neglect or base rate bias, is a fallacy. If presented with related base rate information (i.e. generic, general information) and specific information (information pertaining only to a certain case), the mind tends to ignore the former and focus on the latter.Base rate neglect is a specific form of the more general extension neglect.Birchfield v. North Dakota
Birchfield v. North Dakota, 579 U.S. ___ (2016), was a case in which the Supreme Court of the United States held that the search incident to arrest doctrine permits law enforcement to conduct warrantless breath tests but not blood tests on suspected drunk drivers.Breath test
A breath test is a type of test performed on air generated from the act of exhalation.Types include:
Breathalyzer – by far the most common usage of this term relates to the legal breath test to determine if a person is driving under the influence of alcohol.
Hydrogen breath test – it is becoming more and more common for people to undertake a medical test for clinical diagnosis of dietary disabilities such as fructose intolerance, fructose malabsorption, lactose intolerance and lactulose intolerance.
The presence of Helicobacter pylori (in peptic ulcer disease) can be tested for with the urea breath test.
Exhaled nitric oxide is a breath test that might signal airway inflammation such as in asthma.
Breath tests for diseases have been developed for early detection of Lung Cancer, Breast Cancer, Pulmonary TB and many others, to serve as an adjunct to existing medical tests. A trial will commence at Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge, England to confirm the efficacy of these breath tests. Phase II and Phase III clinical studies by Menssana Research, Inc. in The United States are also under way.Breathometer
Breathometer was a device that claimed to measure someone's blood alcohol content using their iOS and Android smartphones. However, the app proved unreliable, and was shut down by the Federal Trade Commission. Breathometer was founded in September 2013 by Charles Michael Yim, who is the company’s current CEO. The company is headquartered in Burlingame, CA.Driving under the influence
Driving under the influence (DUI) is the crime or offense of driving or operating a motor vehicle while impaired by alcohol or other drugs (including recreational drugs and those prescribed by physicians), to a level that renders the driver incapable of operating a motor vehicle safely.Drunk dialing
Drunk dialing is an intoxicated person making phone calls that they would not likely make if sober, often a lonely individual calling former or current love interests.
In Kurt Vonnegut's 1969 novel Slaughterhouse-Five, the main character describes his tendency to drunk dial:
I have this disease late at night sometimes, involving alcohol and the telephone. I get drunk, and I drive my wife away with breath like mustard gas and roses. And then, speaking gravely and elegantly into the telephone, I ask the telephone operators to connect me with this friend or that one, from whom I have not heard in years.
In the 2004 film Sideways, Miles Raymond (Paul Giamatti) gets drunk and calls his ex-wife while at a restaurant. When he returns to the table, his friend Jack (Thomas Haden Church) asks him, "Did you drink and dial?"
Drunk texting, emailing, and editing internet sites are related phenomena, and potentially yet more embarrassing for the sender as, when the message is sent, it cannot be rescinded; the message may be misspelled (due to being drunk), and it might be reviewed and shared among many.IID (disambiguation)
IID may refer to:
Interface Identifier, the last 64-bits of an IPv6 address
Internet identity, a social identity used by Internet users
Internet Identity, an Internet security company
Ignition interlock device, a breathalyzer connected to a vehicle's engine
Independent and identically distributed random variables in probability theory
Interaural intensity difference in determining the location of a sound
Internal Investigations Division (in law enforcement)
IRIX Interactive Desktop, software for interacting with a computer running the IRIX operating system
Iterative and Incremental Development in software development
Infinite Improbability Drive
A COM Interface ID
Invoke Image Display an Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise (IHE) Integration Profile
Imperial Irrigation DistrictIndiana State Police
The Indiana State Police is the statewide law enforcement agency for the U.S. state of Indiana. Indiana was the 12th state to offer protection to its citizens with a state police force.
Its headquarters are in the Indiana Government Center North in Indianapolis.Intoxalock
Intoxalock, is the primary DBA of Consumer Safety Technology, LLC, which developed technology used by ignition interlock devices, which are breathalyzers installed in vehicles. They are based in Des Moines, Iowa, United States. The devices are meant to deter people from driving while intoxicated, and are often mandated by courts of law for people who have DUI or DWI offenses.List of sensors
This is a list of sensors sorted by sensor type.R v Prosper
R v Prosper,  3 S.C.R. 236 is a decision of the Supreme Court of Canada on the right to duty counsel upon arrest or detainment by police under section 10(b) of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The Court found that merely reading the accused his or her rights is insufficient to discharge the right to counsel; the police must also provide the accused with access to legal aid or duty counsel.
Cyril Prosper was pulled over by the police for driving erratically. The police noticed that he was severely inebriated and arrested him. They read him his rights and provided him access to a telephone and telephone directory to call a lawyer. He declined to call a lawyer in private practice as he said he could not afford it. He then agreed to take a Breathalyzer test.
At trial Prosper successfully argued that Breathalyzer results were taken in violation of his Charter rights to counsel under section 10(b).
The question before the Supreme Court was first, whether section 10(b) of the Charter imposes a substantive constitutional obligation on governments to ensure that duty counsel is available upon arrest or detention to provide free and immediate preliminary legal advice upon request.
Second, whether the evidence should be excluded under section 24(2) of the Charter as it would bring the administration of justice into disrepute.
The court unanimously held that the Charter does not impose an obligation to ensure duty counsel is available upon arrest. In a five to three decision the Court held that the evidence should be excluded.Reduce Impaired Driving Everywhere
Reduce Impaired Driving Everywhere or RIDE is a sobriety testing program used by police in Ontario, Canada. The program began in 1977 as Reduce Impaired Driving in Etobicoke and the success of the program led to the expansion across the province of Ontario.
The roadside spot-checks usually appear during the holidays to catch drunk drivers, but the program lasts year round. Volunteers are also enlisted to participate in the program. Officers from participating police forces are usually members of traffic and auxiliary units.
Police roadside spot-checks are set up on major roadways and off-ramps of highways. All drivers are stopped and interrogated upon reaching the checkpoint. If a driver is suspected to be intoxicated, the officer may request a roadside breathalyzer test. Drivers are also provided a pamphlet detailing the program.
Spot checks usually consist of several cruisers and pylons to direct cars into the area. Trailers are used to conduct breathalyzer testing. Tow trucks may be on standby to remove any vehicles with drivers caught drunk.
In 1985, the program was challenged as a violation of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The Supreme Court of Canada ruled that the random roadside checks do not violate the Charter as long as they are carried out for the purposes of the R.I.D.E. program only. Police officers may not use R.I.D.E. stops as the basis for any other investigation.Robert Frank Borkenstein
Robert Frank Borkenstein (August 31, 1912 – August 10, 2002) was an American police officer and scientist, and inventor of the Breathalyzer.Rolla Neil Harger
Rolla Neil Harger (January 14, 1890 – August 8, 1983) invented an early breathalyzer, called the Drunkometer, to test for driving under the influence in 1931; he was awarded the patent in 1936. He was biochemistry and pharmacology department chairman of the Indiana University School of Medicine from 1933 to 1956 and worked as a professor in the department of biochemistry and toxicology from 1922 to 1960.Harger was born on January 14, 1890 in Nebraska or in Decatur County, Kansas. He graduated from Yale University in 1922.
Harger was an assistant professor at Indiana University School of Medicine in the newly formed department of biochemistry and pharmacology.In 1931 he invented the Drunkometer to test for driving under the influence. In 1938 he was one of the five people chosen to be on the subcommittee of the National Safety Council that drafted the model legislation that set the blood alcohol content for driving under the influence.Sobriety
Sobriety is the condition of not having any measurable levels or effects from alcohol or other drugs. Sobriety is also considered to be the natural state of a human being given at a birth. A person in a state of sobriety is considered sober. In a treatment setting, sobriety is the achieved goal of independence from consuming alcohol. As such, sustained abstinence is a prerequisite for sobriety. Early in abstinence, residual effects of alcohol consumption can preclude sobriety. These effects are labeled "PAWS," or "post acute withdrawal syndrome." Someone who abstains, but has a latent desire to resume use, is not considered truly sober. An abstainer may be subconsciously motivated to resume alcohol consumption, but for a variety of reasons, abstains (e.g. a medical or legal concern precluding use). Sobriety has more specific meanings within specific contexts, such as the culture of many substance use recovery programs, law enforcement, and some schools of psychology. In some cases, sobriety implies achieving "life balance."United States Military Entrance Processing Command
The United States Military Entrance Processing Command (USMEPCOM) is a Major Command of the U.S. Department of Defense, which screens and processes applicants into the United States Armed Forces. USMEPCOM is headquartered in North Chicago, Illinois and operates 65 Military Entrance Processing Stations (MEPS) located throughout the United States. The command's motto is Freedom's Front Door, signifying that a service member's career starts when they walk through the doors of the MEPS.
USMEPCOM is a joint service command under the direction of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Military Personnel Policy, who in turn reports to the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness.
These stations process applicants for military service, putting them through a battery of tests and examinations to ensure that they meet the standards required to serve in the United States Armed Forces. These tests include vision, hearing, blood, and blood pressure tests, a pregnancy test (for women), an examination by a doctor, a height and weight check, urinalysis, a breathalyzer test, a moral/background examination, as well as the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB). If applicants are deemed qualified for military service, they will also meet with a service counselor, negotiate and sign enlistment contracts, and swear or affirm an entrance oath.
USMEPCOM has been awarded the Joint Meritorious Unit Award twice. The first award was for the period of 1 July 1982 until 30 April 1985; the second award was for the period of 1 January 2005 until 31 December 2007.William Duncan McNally
William Duncan McNally (July 8, 1882 – June 29, 1961) was the chief chemist in the Cook County Department of Public Health and the chief chemist for the Cook County Medical Examiner's office. He invented an early breathalyzer in 1927.He was a holder of M.D..
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