Continuously Monitor Alcohol Levels With SCRAM

The Arizona Legislature continues to crack down on DUI offenders, tightening the leash and enforcing harsher punishments. Despite law enforcement’s efforts to discourage drunk driving, there continues to be a constant number of cases.

So if harsher punishments aren’t decreasing the number of DUI incidents in Arizona, what might help? One device picking up steam is what is called a SCRAM bracelet. This Secure Continuous Remote Alcohol Monitor (SCRAM) is an 8-ounce bracelet made by Alcohol Monitoring Systems Inc. and is worn by offenders continuously, 24 hours a day, monitoring sweat through transdermal analysis.

The SCRAM bracelet measures alcohol using the same fuel cell technology used by most portable breath testing devices. The bracelet is able to work because alcohol is released through sweat and leaves the body unchanged because it’s not metabolized through the liver.

Later, the information collected by the bracelet is downloaded into a modem and maintained by management company, Intercept LLC.
The bracelet essentially measures the amount of ethanol in a person’s sweat.

This technology helps people stay sober and determines their compliance with court orders restricting them from alcohol use. Previously, blood alcohol or breath tests indicated alcohol use at that time, not in the hours before or after the test was completed. This device is tamper proof, as the management company is alerted if offenders try to remove the bracelet or place something around their skin to prevent it from taking any readings.

The device is not 100% accurate, but in the case of false positives, it is a quick process of determining whether offenders drank alcohol or their ankle was exposed to something such as hairspray, based on the rate of its metabolism.

The bracelet’s battery is good for about 90 days and an alert is made if the battery is getting low. SCRAM is paid for by the offenders, costing about $12 a day.

SCRAM bracelets have been an option for a few years, but haven’t been widely used just yet. They’re definitely a great option to continuously monitor alcohol intake.

This post was intended to provide general information only and is not intended as specific legal advice. You should not rely upon this information alone, but should consult legal counsel regarding the application of the laws and regulations discussed and as applied to your specific case or circumstance.