Oklahoma Will Be Testing a Marijuana Breathalyzer in New Program
They say it will be rolling out in the next few months.
The Department of Public Safety confirmed it will be testing a new breathalyzer as part of a recently approved pilot program. Basically if an officer believes you're driving under the influence, they would run a traditional sobriety or blood test. Since marijuana stays in your system longer, even if you didn't have any that day, that test would most likely fail.
They say this new breathalyzer can only detect if you have had marijuana in the past few hours. Hound Labs has been working on this technology for the past six years. They say their breathalyzer takes data from the deep lungs. Unlike a normal alcohol breathalyzer which measures your blood alcohol content, this one will only give a pass or fail. The marijuana breathalyzer doesn't give some sort of BAC reading.
The goal, according to advocates, is to identify drivers who have smoked cannabis within a 2 to 3-hour time frame, or those who've consumed edible marijuana up to four or five hours later. If the pilot program is successful, the plan would need to go back to the state legislature. The current law in Oklahoma states that you can only test for alcohol using a breathalyzer.
If the program tests successfully, new legislature will be needed in the state of Oklahoma to use this in the field. If it is eventually signed into law, independent law enforcement departments would need to find ways to fund the breathalyzers in their own jurisdictions. We will see what happens in Oklahoma, they plan to begin testing within the next year.