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  • Stephen Biss

Reliability: Ambient Fail System


Tip 42: A properly functioning ambient fail system in the approved instrument is a condition precedent to reliability of the alcohol standard in a wet-bath #duisimulator.

It is a requirement of the Alcohol Test Committee that any new breath instrument, submitted for evaluation, be equipped with an automatic ambient fail detection system. This requirement is included in the 2014 ATC equipment evaluation standards at page 5:

The 2013 ATC Recommended Standards provision read as follows at page 4:

The 2009 ATC Recommended Standards provision read as follows at page 5:

The obvious purpose of these requirements is to ensure that any "approved instrument" is able to automatically control for ambient ethyl alcohol (and other interferents) in the breath room and trigger an error message if ambient conditions exceed a threshold of 10 mg/100 mls. The requirement is considered a condition precedent to the reliability of future cal checks and subject tests on the future "approved instrument" being evaluated.

It is respectfully submitted that any actions by a qualified technician to modify, disconnect, or disable the ambient fail system on an approved instrument such as the Intoxilyzer® 8000C either changes the "nature or kind" of the approved instrument (see Code section 254(1)"approved instrument") or constitutes operator error (under section 258(1)(c)).

#ambientfail #reliability #tip

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