• Could a dual-purpose breathalyzer keep drugged drivers off the road?

    By: Malini Basu

    Updated:

    BOSTON - Now that cannabis is legal in Massachusetts, one former lawmaker is trying to keep the streets safer by inventing a 2-in-1 device that measures your alcohol and marijuana intoxication in one breathalyzer test.

    It's a device Walpole’s Police Chief John Carmichael is for. 

    "Even though it’s legal, it’s not legal to drive impaired," he said. "Allowing the officers on the street to have the right tools to address this is very important."

    We spoke with former Watertown State Senator and Representative Warren Tolman about the device he is helping build with Hound labs. 

    The device is expected to detect if someone had smoked marijuana or taken THC within the last 2 to 3 hours.

    "If you dropped one medicine drop into ten Olympic sized swimming pools, it would be the equivalent of finding one picogram. It's a very, very sensitive device," Tolman said. 

    Tolman said the device could be rolled out as early as the end of this year. The last hurdle would be getting courts to recognize the device's results in trials. 

    MORE: Prosecutors, police struggle to convict suspected drugged drivers

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