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Personal breathalyzers: these could still get you in trouble

On Behalf of | Aug 30, 2017 | Blood Alcohol Tests |

Here’s something to consider regarding personal breathalyzers that retail for about 80 bucks and are currently being touted by Colorado officials: Given that the considerably more expensive and sophisticated breathalyzers employed by the Colorado State Patrol and police agencies statewide are sometimes found to deliver erroneous blood-alcohol results, how foolproof can a smartphone app truly be?

Apparently, many state motorists are about to find out, with a campaign underway pursuant to which the Colorado Department of Transportation is urging drivers to splurge on a product made by the company BACtrack. Until October kicks in, BACtrack will be selling the personal breathalyzer at about a 20% discount. The CDOT actively promotes the purchase.

“We’re hoping people learn that there is technology readily available,” says a regulatory principal. He concedes that the $80 outlay might not be a doable proposition for all state drivers, but he says that “it’s a lot less than the cost and the ramifications of getting a DUI.”

We have noted in past select posts the unquestionably high — for most people, punishingly steep — exactions that flow from a DUI arrest and conviction in Colorado. Reportedly, even a first offender can be slapped with over $13,000 in fines and other levies.

So, on balance, the $80 outlay for some protection might reasonably seem warranted to many people.

With this caveat, of course: provided it works.

It will certainly be the case, of course, that no Colorado law enforcer will take the word of a motorist that he or she is far beneath the DUI blood-alcohol threshold because a phone app indicates that is the case.

At any rate, and while the new product will likely yield benefits for some people across the state, it simply cannot promise to be an absolute protector for a motorist involved in a DUI stop.

Questions or concerns regarding any aspect of a drunk driving-related encounter in Colorado can be directed to an experienced Denver DUI criminal defense attorney.