Breathalyzers Used In Alberta

In Alberta, the common roadside machines used by police for taking a blood alcohol content reading are the Intoxilyzer, Alco-Sensor, Alco-Sur, and Breathalyzer. These machines use breath samples to measure the concentration of BAC in a driver. Typically, an officer will pull over and approach a vehicle that has demonstrated erratic or unusual driving behaviour. Upon speaking with the driver, the police officer reserves the right to request that the driver submit a BAC sample. In Alberta, a driver who blows over .05 is subject to an immediate 72-hour suspension of their license and seizure of their vehicle. If a driver blows over .08, they are subject to an immediate criminal charge of impaired driving.

How Does The Intoxilyzer Work?

The Intoxilyzer, commonly used by law enforcement, relies on the use of UV light, passed through a chamber where a breath sample is submitted. Before every use, the machine is cleared with a base line calibration of 0.0 before a subject submits their sample. Upon breathing into the Intoxilyzer, the UV light level will be diminished by the presence of alcohol molecules in the sample. This differentiation is what produces a BAC reading for law enforcement officers.

Watch the following clip that explains how the Intoxilyzer works.

Have You Been Charged With Impaired Driving In Alberta?

Drunk driving charges are not a traffic related offense. They are formal criminal charges that are not to be taken lightly. They come with stiff prison sentences and considerable financial penalties in fines and future insurance fees. If you have been formally charged with impaired driving, call our criminal defense lawyers in Grande Prairie and let us help you defend your rights, and possibly reduce your sentence.




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