Oregon, like just about every other state, uses a breath test machine to calculate an individual’s blood alcohol level when someone has been arrested for Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants (aka DUII, DUI, DWI, or in the vernacular, “drunk driving”). There are a number of breath test machines on the market. Oregon primarily uses the Intoxylizer 8000. For the last number of decades Oregon has used the Intoxilyzer brand. Oregon originally used the Intoxilyzer 4011, then the Intoxilyzer 4011A, then the Intoxilyzer 5000, and now uses the Intoxylzer 8000.
The Intoxylizer 8000 uses a protocol where after the officer conducts a pretest observation of the individual to ensure that the person has not regurgitated any liquid from the person’s stomach into the mouth, or put anything in his or her mouth for at least 15 minutes prior to the test, then the person provides two separate breath samples. The Intoxylizer 8000 then chooses the lower sample, truncates the third digit, and finally produces a result of the two digits following the decimal.
If the officer has conducted the test properly, and the machine has been properly certified, that breath test result is likely admissible in a DUII trial. A number of issues can arise with regard to the accuracy of this breath testing result. There are a number of private forensic scientists in Oregon, who are available to testify regarding the accuracy issues with this machine. Because the machine tests breath and then produces an estimate of the person’s blood alcohol content, the first issue that arises is whether the individual who blew into the machine has a close enough breath to blood ratio of alcohol for the machine to be accurate for that individual. The machine, at a very basic level, takes a sample of an individual’s breath, and then assumes that there is the same amount of alcohol in 2100 cubic centimeters of that person’s breath as there is in one cubic centimeter of the person’s blood. This ratio, for most of the population, is going to be close enough to get a close approximation of the person’s blood alcohol level, but there are individuals whose breath to blood ratio is so much higher or so much lower than the assumed breath to blood ratio, that the Intoxilyzer’s result could be off by enough of a margin that it could create a dangerously false reading.
The Duvall Law Office represents individuals throughout Oregon, but most specifically in the Lane County area, who are charged with Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants (aka DUII, DUI, DWI, or “drunk driving”). The Duvall Law Office spends most of its time defending cases in Lane County Circuit Court, Springfield Municipal Court, Eugene Municipal Court, Junction City Municipal Court, Cottage Grove Municipal Court, Florence Municipal Court and a number of other courts in the region. The Duvall Law Office also represents individuals charged with DUII in Benton County, Linn County, Douglas County and Coos County. An individual charged with Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants should consult with an experienced DUII attorney. Please contact the Duvall Law Office to schedule an appointment to discuss the specifics of your case: Call 541-345-4500.