Florida DUI Intoxilyzer8000 Attorney

If you’ve been arrested for DUI inFort Lauderdale, Boca Raton, Broward and Palm Beach County, Florida, contact Arnesen Law, P.A. and have an experienced defense attorney review your case.

Many people arrested for DUIs take a breath test at the site of the arrest or at the law enforcement office. The fact you took a breath test and the results of your breath test can and will be used against you in a court of law. A potential defense strategy is to exclude the fact you took a breath test and the results of your breath test, thus leaving the prosecutor without a critical piece of evidence to prove a DUI charge.

Problems with the Intoxilzyer 8000:

  • The Intoxilyzer 8000 is the official breath test instrument of the State of Florida.
  • When the Intoxilyzer is calibrated, if the temperature of the testing solution is off by as little as one-fifth of one degree (.20), the calibration is not considered accurate. Human body temperatures may vary as much as 3 degrees– depending on health, physical activity or even the hour of the day! If you have a slight fever and your body temperature is elevated by only 1 degree Centigrade (1.8 degrees Fahrenheit), your apparent blood alcohol will be artificially inflated by approximately 7 percent.
  • The underlying physical principle of the Intoxilyzer is known as “Henry’s Law,” which states that the concentration of a volatile chemical in vapor above a solution is proportional to the concentration of the chemical in the solution. This is true in the laboratory, but in humans, the proportions can vary by as much as 50%. This means that the Intoxilyzer can overstate your blood alcohol by as much as 50%! As Drs. Stefan Rose and Kenneth Furton have written, “Henry’s Law does not apply in the lungs. In order for Henry’s Law to apply, three conditions must be met.
  • One, the solution must be in a closed system, like a sealed bottle. The lungs are open, not closed.
  • Two, the solution must be kept at a known, constant temperature. The lung temperature is never known, and the temperature is always changing.
  • Three, the pressure must be kept constant. The lungs are always changing pressure, decreasing pressure to inhale and increasing pressure to exhale. Without all three conditions present, it is not possible for equilibrium to occur, and Henry’s Law does not apply.”
  • The Intoxilyzer 8000 operates on a principle known as the “Lambert-Beer Law,” which states that the amount of infrared light absorbed by your breath is proportional to the amount of alcohol in the sample. Think of it like the way in which fog will block your car’s headlights on a damp night. In short, the more alcohol there is, the less infrared light that gets through the chamber to the detector. However, there are other compounds, called “interferents,” which can also block the infrared. Simply put, the Intoxilyzer 8000 cannot reliably tell them all apart.
  • Three or four deep breaths before blowing into the Intoxilyzer will cool your lungs and fill them with fresh air. This sort of hyperventilation may lower your breath alcohol by as much as 55%, without violating the protocols of the test.
  • The protocol for the Intoxilyzer 8000 in Florida requires only that you blow 1.1 liters of breath. The average adult has a “vital capacity” (the amount he or she can forcibly exhale in one breath) of between three and four liters. The police will urge you to keep blowing your entire breath into the machine. However, such a long breath will artificially increase the apparent amount of alcohol in your breath by skewing the sample toward your “deep lung air,” where the alcohol is more highly concentrated. If you only blow half of your breath, you will give an adequate sample, which will be up to 30% less than the sample that the police want you to give.
  • The Intoxilyzer 8000 measures how much breath you provide by something called a ‘pressure transducer.’ Instead of directly measuring the volume of your breath by a pressure switch, like the old Intoxilyzer 5000 did, the 8000 indirectly measures breath. Not only is it needlessly complicated, it simply doesn’t work! The flow sensor systems in Florida’s Intoxilyzer 8000’s are so unreliable that FDLE ordered that police stop keeping records of the system in monthly checks. In 2011, a system-wide check showed that 40% of the machines in Florida couldn’t accurately measure breath volume! And on a machine whose pressure transducer was not properly calibrated, the machine was three to five times more likely to deliver an alcohol reading over .25.

The CMI Intoxilyzer 8000 breath test machine has many problems which an experienced DUI attorney can use to win your case. These problems can be broadly categorized as Operational Issues and Legality Issues:

Operational Issues:

The Intoxilyzer 8000 breath test machine is far from infallible and relies on a human element that is inherent with errors. Operational issues that may be used as defenses in your DUI case include:

  • Human error;
  • Environmental factors;
  • The breath test may not accurately represent your true Blood Alcohol Content (BAC);
  • Residual mouth alcohol may be measured higher than your true breath alcohol level;
  • The amount of time between your arrest and breath test;
  • The breath test device may be improperly maintained.

Legality Issues with the Intoxilyzer 8000:

If your breath test was conducted using the Intoxilyzer 8000,your lawyer may be able to exclude the results from evidence.

First, according to Florida law, all devices utilized for alcohol breath tests must be evaluated by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE), through their alcohol testing program. Further, the FDLE can only evaluate equipment on the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Conforming Products List (CPL). The Department of Transportation does in fact list the CMI Intoxilyzer8000, however it specifically states, “Which analyzes breath samples using the 3.4- and 9-micron bandwidth.” The issue is that the CMI Intoxilyzer 8000 utilized in Florida does not analyze breath samples using the 3.4- and 9-micron bandwidth, it in fact does not utilize the specified bandwidths. Thus, there is a serious question whether or not the CMI Intoxilyzer 8000 is an approved breath test device in Florida.

Second, there is a potential programmatic problem with the CMI Intoxilyzer 8000. Much like a computer, the CMI Intoxilyzer 8000 relies on firmware (software) that regulates its operation. To date, the state of Florida has ruled that the defense is not entitled to the source code (firmware and/or software code) for the CMI Intoxilyzer 8000. This was because the defense in prior cases had not shown that the source code was material to the cases presented. Attorneys have since shown potential anomalies with the CMI Intoxilyzer 8000 results. If the state does not release the source code so it can be examined, and cannot provide an expert to show that the device is, “accurate and reliable scientifically,” there exists the potential that breath test results from the CMI Intoxilyzer 8000 may be inadmissible.

Don’t waste any more time searching the internet, call Jay M. Arnesen, an experienced DUI Attorney now.

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