Last week the Appellate Court in the Eastern District of Missouri heard two cases regarding the regulations for maintenance of breathalyzer machines.
In these cases, the drivers argued that their breath tests should not be admitted as the mixture used to perform maintenance checks on the breathalyzer was not proved from an approved supplier. In both cases, maintenance reports indicated the supplier was Intoximeters, an approved supplier from the Department of Health and Senior Services. Airgass was the manufacturer. Airgas is not listed as an approved supplier. The drivers maintained the testing solution needed to be supplied and manufactured by an approved supplier. Without meeting this component, the Driver’s stated the Director of Revenue failed to lay a proper foundation to admit the results of the breath test.
While the Department of Health and Senior Services regulations once required that the manufacturer certify the solutions, the regulation no longer makes mention of manufacturers. The Court held that the manufacturer of the material used to verify and calibrate the breathalyzer is no longer relevant for the purpose of laying a foundation for the admission of results from that machine. Further, the supplier no longer has to certify the testing solution.