BREATH ALCOHOL TECHNICIAN / BAT TRAINING / GENERAL INFORMATION

The U.S. Department of Transportation alcohol testing program requires technicians to be trained according to a specific curriculum [reference 49 CFR Part 40.213(b)(1)]. This curriculum is quite thorough and is also appropriate for non-regulated workplace and industrial alcohol testing programs. 

There are two main components to BAT training that are prerequisites for certification. 

  1. The student must be trained on the rules and regulations through a 6 ½ hour classroom lecture (8 hours including lunches and breaks). Refresher BAT students must complete 3 hours of rules and regulations training. Alternatively, component 1 can be accomplished via a video or computer based training program, as long as the program meets the requirements of the BAT Model Course. 
  2. Component 2 requires the student to demonstrate proficiency in administering an alcohol test using the EBT instrument. The student must perform a minimum of 7 mock tests on a live subject using their EBT instrument. These mock tests must be monitored by a qualified instructor.

There are several parts to the training issue. 

  1. DOT now requires refresher training for BATs every five years. Any BATs trained prior to 2008 do not currently meet the training requirements of 49 CFR Part 40.213.  In addition, urine drug screen collectors are also required to have qualification training and refresher training every 5 years.
  2. DOT does not mandate Instructor training to train BATs (or Urine Collectors). You can train BATs (per 49 CFR Part 40.213) if (1) you have regularly conducted alcohol tests as a BAT for a period of at least one year, or (2) you have conducted BAT training for at least a year, or (3) you have successfully completed an Instructor course.
  3. Anyone who performs a calibration adjustment on the equipment must have a certificate issued by the manufacturer (49 CFR Part 40.233). So, Intoximeters requires that anyone who trains Calibration Technicians must maintain a current Intoximeters Instructor certificate.

Additionally, DOT has stated that “any employer who takes an adverse personnel action against an employee who fails a DOT alcohol test should be prepared to defend the training of the BAT during possible litigation proceedings that may develop as a result of that action.” It is incumbent upon employers to protect themselves by requiring training programs that use competent instructors. Any person or company who trains BATs needs to be prepared to provide documentation to employers that they are performing the training in accordance with the DOT rules and requirements. For this reason, Intoximeters would strongly urge persons who expect to train BATs to invest in an Instructor course.

As long as you have been regularly conducting alcohol tests with your Intoximeters’ equipment for at least one year and are thoroughly familiar with the current DOT regulations regarding alcohol testing, you may train others as BATs. However, you must insure that you train others according to the latest DOT regulations contained in 49 CFR Part 40. The best way to obtain that information is through a factory Instructor course, but Intoximeters does offer training materials to help with the instruction of BATs.