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5 Essential Questions to Ask Your Breath Alcohol Technician (BAT)
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by Betye Bailey

With far fewer breath alcohol tests being performed compared to urine drug screen collections, you may be faced with the training issue of “If you don’t use it, you lose it”. Confirming that your BAT is proficient and educated on an ongoing basis not only ensures the defensibility of your findings, but also protects the reputation of your business.

We have identified 5 questions that frequently arise in court proceedings or arbitration against a positive test result. Every BAT should be able to answer and understand the following about their Evidential Breath Testing (EBT) instrument:

1.    How much air does the donor have to provide for a sample to be taken?

HINT: Depending on your instrument, there could be quite a difference in the volume needed to produce a valid test result.

2.    How does your instrument measure alcohol?

HINT: Can your BAT explain how the technology and instrument works in layman’s terms?

3.    How do you know your instrument is accurate?

HINT: Have they been keeping a calibration log book? Do they know the difference between an accuracy check and a calibration?

4.    How do you know the dry gas standard you used is accurate?

HINT: Are you using a NIST traceable gas? How has the barometric pressure been taken into account?

5.    What are the Quality Assurance (QA) requirements for this instrument?

HINT: When is a accuracy check needed? At what time would a calibration be necessary?

Is Your BAT Knowledgeable About Their Instrument?

 

Next Steps

If your BAT had difficulty answering and understanding these 5 questions, you may need to have a retraining session. Consider a monthly meeting to go over this information and keep it fresh in your BAT’s mind and make refresher training a priority.

For more information on ensuring a defensible breath testing program and to receive updated news and information from Intoximeters go to www.workplacealcoholtesting.com.  To research articles about breath alcohol testing, please see our website at http://www.intox.com/t-trainingpublishedarticles.aspx.

Betye Bailey
About Betye Bailey
Betye Bailey is the Corporate Training Manager for Intoximeters. She prepares and maintains course curriculums and conducts training for both the law enforcement and workplace/industrial markets as well as functioning as the regulatory compliance support contact for DOT, NRC and USCG customers. Betye has trained over 6,500 BATs, Instructors and Collectors in her tenure at Intoximeters.

1 Comment

  • bOB b tHOMPSON
    2:35 PM - 13 May, 2017

    APPRECIATE ALL UPDATES

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