Many drivers in New Jersey and across the nation have been subject to tests by breathalyzers. The history of the breathalyzer dates back to 1953, when it was invented to measure a person’s blood-alcohol content. With advances in technology, some breathalyzers work with smart phones or are small enough to fit on key chains. The usefulness of personal breathalyzers could increase if the nation lowers the limit for blood-alcohol levels in drunk driving from .08 percent to .05 percent according to new recommendations from the National Transportation Safety Board.
Three different types of breathalyzers vary according to the type of sensors they have. You can buy the least expensive kind in a drug store, which uses a semi-conductor sensor. Hand-held sensors used by law enforcement officers use fuel cells to sense alcohol. Almost anyone can purchase these devices. The most accurate of all are register official measurements and use highly accurate spectrophotometer technology.
An expert on the machines explained that the breathalyzers register the air that a person blows at the very end of a person’s breath. Anyone who has submitted a breath test might feel like they could pass out from blowing into the machine. The less expensive machines measure a number of organic compounds and could register false positives, especially in the case of a diabetic person who might have chemicals in their system that can be mistaken for alcohol.
Ignition interlock devices are another type of breathalyzer that install into cars in order to keep a vehicle from starting if the person has been drinking. One designer who worked on IIDs thought that handheld breathalyzers could help stop the problem before it started and helped create small devices so that people could test their own BAC levels.
Breathalyzers are often used to charge and convict people of DUIs. A criminal defense attorney might be able to fight the charges against clients.