Archaic Breathalyzers Put NJ DWI Enforcement In Limbo


As the height of the holiday season approaches, police in New Jersey say they soon might not be able to nab drunken drivers, reports the Bergen Record. Replacement parts for Breathalyzer machines are no longer being made, and the state’s highest court has kept police from using newer technology. Last year, at the direction of the state Attorney General, police departments in 17 counties began replacing the five-decades-old Breathalyzer with the Alcotest, which spits out a paper reading of a driver’s blood-alcohol level.

The state Supreme Court is considering the validity and scientific integrity of the new units, leaving at least four counties in DWI testing limbo. The case is more than a year old. “Police officers are out there trying to nab drunk drivers who are out there killing people and injuring people, and they are forced to use a technology that’s obsolete?” asked Teresa Stevens of Mothers Against Drunk Driving. “That’s absurd.”


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