Breath testing in Kern County for DUI goes back nearly a century. Some of the first breath tests required the suspect to blow into a balloon and the sample was tested back in the lab for BAC. The evolution of dui breath testing has a rich history from the drunk o meter machine to the so called breathalyzer apparatus to the modern day sophisticated machines that have the ability to print on the spot and do their own accuracy checks without the assistance of a human.
Within the last 5 years kern county implemented a machine called the Draeger device , specifically the Alcotest 7110. This machine is used roadside by the officer so their is no need to transport the arrested person back to the police station or jail. The breath machine has printing capabilities and also can be used as a preliminary alcohol screening test or PAS that is utilized for under 21 DUI and as a field sobriety test prior to arrest.
The breath machine are some of the latest technology but do have the usual failings such as difficulty distinguishing between alveolar air and mouth alcohol which can be a huge issue in a criminal prosecution.
The breath machines in Kern County are checked periodically by the Regional Crime Lab and have to undergo periodic checks by lab personnel that ensure the devices are in good working order. There are however problems that can arise that will affect the accuracy of the sample. If you have been arrested for DWI or drunk driving in Bakersfield or anywhere else in Kern County you should speak with a local attorney to examine the records and ascertain whether the sample in your case is reliable.