The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has partnered with the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation (PIRE) to assess the existing Secure Continuous Remote Alcohol Monitor (SCRAM) technology employed in the nation’s courts.
This evaluation covers the recognition of popular SCRAM programs and the instigation of new case studies, thereby facilitating other agencies to make use of this innovative technology.
SCRAM resembles an ankle bracelet and the offender has to wear it all through the day. Every half an hour, it takes sample from the convict’s perspiration and examines it for assuring conformity as per the court’s order. At present with the help of the SCRAM bracelets, daily around 12,000 convicts like juvenile offenders and drunk drivers are remotely monitored by agencies located in 48 states. Even family courts adopt SCRAM anklets for monitoring the offenders.
The PIRE team has completed the assessment of various SCRAM programs and currently they are involved in performing SCRAM case studies by selecting 8 to 10 convicts. The case studies are focused on delivering the best models and in providing better insight for the courts in terms of meeting the challenges and the probable effects of 24/7 monitoring.
Mike Iiams, President and CEO of Alcohol Monitoring Systems Inc., which produces and markets the SCRAM technology has stated that the reason behind NHTSA’s interest in SCRAM lies in its being a new application that has become indispensable in courts and probation divisions. He added that the previous NHTSA study was performed in 2005 for evaluating the first generation of SCRAM and till August, around 145000 convicts were monitored for alcohol intake.
The latest SCRAM products were launched in February 2010. They include house arrest capabilities into the anklet at the court’s discrimination. It was reported that the NHTSA will concentrate only on alcohol monitoring programs.