Very few law enforcement offices in Texas are using the Intoxilyzer 5000 EN devices and virtually all have adopted the Intoxilyzer 9000 machine.
However, some of the the 5000 EN machines are still in use.
Police say that the Intoxilyzer 5000 EN will show only a result of the breath tested and that breath only comes from deep lung air.
Non-police scientists disagree.
They say that the Intoxilyzer often misreads other commonly found substances in human breath and erroneously causes the device to read high.
Of particular importance are the following facts:
Automatic and undetected error can be illustrated by simply recognizing that the person tested is not exactly average.
In this regard, it should be noted that the Intoxilyzer 5000 EN assumes a blood/breath ratio of 2,100/1 (i.e., 2,100 parts of alcohol in the blood for every 1 part of alcohol in the breath) for every person tested.
Here, it can be noted that a majority of persons have a blood/breath ratio of 2,100/1 or greater.
The Intoxilyzer 5000 EN’s assumption will not be prejudiced against persons with a blood/breath ratio of 2,100/1 or greater.
However, the test will be prejudiced against persons with a lower blood/breath ratio, because the Intoxilyzer will erroneously read too high of an alcohol concentration result, thus potentially causing a person who should test at .04, .05, .06, etc., to actually test at .08, .11, .12, etc.
Of particular import here is the fact that scientists have documented persons with blood/breath ratios as low as 1,100/1.
This same type of prejudice also occurs where the person tested is not exactly average with respect to other bodily functions: muscle development, temperature, hematocrit level, etc.
Moreover, since the machine was built by humans, is serviced by humans, and is operated by humans, it is subject to human error just like all other machines.
The above facts conclusively demonstrate that the Intoxilyzer, even if it is properly working and is being properly operated, because the person being tested is not exactly average, can label an innocent person as guilty.
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