The potential for breath freshener strips to interfere with the accuracy of a breath alcohol test was studied. Twelve varieties of breath freshener strips from five manufacturers were examined. Breath tests were conducted using the infrared based BAC DataMaster or the fuel cell based Alco-Sensor IV-XL, 30 and 150 seconds after placing a breath strip on the tongue. No effect was observed using the Alco-Sensor system. Some of the strips gave a small reading at 30 seconds (less than or equal to 0.010 g/210 L apparent alcohol) using the DataMaster. Readings on the DataMaster returned to zero by the 150 second test. A proper pre-test observation and deprivation period should prevent any interference from breath freshener strips on breath alcohol testing.
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