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Feds Backoff Forcing Breathalyzer Samples Without Permission In Roadside Surveys

Transportation officials on Wednesday responded to mounting questions about the tactics used by a roadside survey on drinking and drugged driving by announcing that survey takers no longer will collect breath samples from motorists without their consent.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said its contractor will get motorists’ permission before using a device called a passive alcohol sensor. Survey takers had been using the device to gather breath samples from motorists before they either could agree to take part in the survey or refuse and drive away, belying the government’s contention that citizen participation was entirely voluntary.

Acting Administrator David Friedman announced the change at a House subcommittee hearing in Washington.

 

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Written by Lewis Shaw

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