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Police in 1 city stop using Intoxilyzer 8000 over accuracy concerns

Readers of this Orlando DUI defense blog likely recall that we have discussed the Intoxilyzer 8000, the device used by police departments throughout Florida to measure the blood-alcohol content of those suspected of drinking and driving. As we have written before, many critics say that the device skews measurements of people's BAL because of the way it works.

In a case before the Florida Supreme Court, DUI defense attorneys are asking the Intoxilyzer 8000's manufacturer, CMI Inc., for more information about the device, but the company has resisted doing so. For now, some courts in Florida have said that BAL measurements drawn by the device is not admissible in court.

The device is also used by law enforcement outside of Florida. But as controversy surrounding the Intoxilyzer 8000 mounts, some local departments are deciding to stop using it. In one city, both the city police department and the local highway patrol recently announced that they would no longer use the device on DUI suspects they have arrested. The departments did so on the advice of the city attorney.

One criticism of the Intoxilyzer 8000's accuracy is that it does not shut off after the tester blows the 1.1 liters of air required to read his or her BAL. Instead, the device often collects much more air, which can create an inaccurately high reading. Attorneys in Florida also say that state officials should have reevaluated the device after CMI made several changes to its design in the past 10-plus years. CMI continues to stand behind the accuracy of its device.

Source: The Marietta Times, "Breath tests," Jasmine Rogers, Feb. 12, 2013

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