Georgia Police to Upgrade Breathalyzers
The time is drawing near for every law enforcement agency in Georgia to replace their breathalyzer machines. Agencies will now be required to upgrade the machines that they have been using for the last 20 years. The current model in use, the Intoxilyzer 5000, will be replaced statewide by the Intoxilyzer 9000.
Some departments across the state have already replaced
their machines. The upgrades began a couple of years ago, but at the start of the New Year, the 5000 model will no longer be considered a valid instrument.
People may jump to the conclusion that the 5000 does not work or that its results are invalid. The truth behind the switch is much simpler than that: CMI, Inc. no longer manufactures the 5000. Because the company is no longer making the machine, parts are scarce or completely unavailable.
A second reason for the big change is that the 5000 prints results on a triplicate form. Copies of results are often lost or replaced. The new machine prints the information on a ticket, but the machine can also store results in the machine itself. The new machines work in a similar way to the old ones, but the 9000 is much more interactive than the 5000.
Even though the models are similar, anyone operating the new machine must be trained on its use to be considered a valid operator. Officers who have had a chance to compare the two models say that the 9000 is much more user friendly than the old model. In departments where the machines have been replaced, officers say that the 9000 looks very similar to its cousin and many claim to not have had any issues with their old machines.
No matter. Every department must have their new machines in place by December 31 of this year.