As part of a new project, breath test machines have been installed in over 100 bars throughout Western Washington. A King 5 news article describes the project, which is being implemented by retired construction manager Bob Brazel.

These machines, which were put in bars over the last several weeks, are estimated to be about 95% accurate. Brazel clarifies that his machines are not as accurate as those of law enforcement. Brazel’s project is designed to give people a chance to monitor themselves while they are out at bars to see where they are in terms of blood alcohol level. The hope is that customers will use the machines before driving their car if they have been drinking, and feel more inclined to use an alternate mode of transportation home if they can see they are over or near the legal limit.

The response from bars has reportedly so far been positive. The breath test machines become a conversation topic and help people to keep blood alcohol limits in mind as they are enjoying their night out. Brazel hopes to continue to install machines in bars around the area and also to have them available for special events, weddings, etc. Brazel project is donating a portion of the proceeds to Northwest Harvest to provide hungry families with nutritious meals.

*Fun Fact: Many people use the term “breathalyzer” to refer to all breath test machines. In fact, “Breathalyzer” is a brand name for the instrument that tests blood alcohol level, but it isn’t even a machine used in Washington State. Breathalyzer was registered as a trademark on May 13, 1954, but many people use the term to refer to any generic device for estimating blood alcohol content. In Washington State the machines used are brands bearing the “DataMaster” and “Draeger” names. The Draeger machines are in the process of replacing the archaic DataMaster, which has been used by law enforcement in Washington since the 1980’s.

Avoiding a DUI Conviction:

As always, Dellino Law Group urges you to drink responsibly. Designate a sober driver or use alternate modes of getting home if you have been drinking. Understand how to avoid getting yourself into the position where you could be pulled over for a DUI and be prepared in the event that you are pulled over and have been drinking. Be aware that a DUI can have serious consequences on your future. You could be looking at driver’s license suspension, large fines, jail time, and the long term impacts of a criminal record.

Please see our recent blog post about how to avoid getting a DUI in Washington State. Please also see our post about fines and penalties for Washington State DUI convictions. We want you to be well prepared and sufficiently informed.

In the event you are being faced with DUI charges, don’t face them alone. These are significant charges and you should not try to tackle them without experienced counsel to advise you appropriately and advocate on your behalf.