With alcohol and drug testing policies implemented in line with the WHS Act, the procurement of breathalysers and calibration services for workplace breath alcohol testing is now more crucial than ever. While the Australian Standard AS3547 may vouch for quality breathalysers, the National Association of Testing Authorities (NATA) in Australia accredits breathalyser calibration centres. NATA accreditation should be taken into consideration when it comes to choosing a breathalyser calibration service for industrial breathalysers.
Significance of NATA accreditation in breathalyser calibration
Breathalysers should be calibrated once every 6 to 12 months to make sure that the breath alcohol results are precise and accurate at all times. NATA accredits breathalyser calibration centres based on the International Organization for Standardization/International Electrotechnical Commission Standard (ISO/IEC 17025) which is recognised nationally and internationally.
These are some of the criteria a breathalyser calibration centre needs to fulfil to qualify for accreditation:
- Validity of calibration methods
- Technical competency of calibration technician
- Traceability of breath alcohol results to ISO/IEC 17025
- Suitability, calibration and maintenance of equipment used
- Handling of items used in calibration
- Quality control and assurance processes
- Reporting of calibration outcome
By adhering to the requirements laid out in the Standard, NATA accredited calibration centres give ample assurance to their customers and the community at large. Breathalysers calibrated at NATA accredited calibration centres come with calibration reports with the NATA emblem as proof of calibration.
NATA accredited calibration centres in Australia
As of April 2022, there are only 11 NATA accredited breathalyser calibration centres throughout Australia, with more than half of them belonging to governmental organisations. You can search for the latest list of NATA accredited calibration centres on NATA's official website.
|Calibration centre||Company / organisation||State|
|Melbourne Calibration Centre||Andatech Pty Ltd||Victoria|
|Breath Analyser Calibration Laboratory||Australian Federal Police||Australian Capital Territory|
|Breath Analyser Calibration Laboratory||Forensic Science Service Tasmania||Tasmania|
|Traffic Enforcement Technologies||Western Australia Police Force||West Australia|
|Calibration Laboratory - Chemical Metrology||Queensland Police Service||Queensland|
|Northern Territory Service Centre||Draeger Australia Pty Ltd||Northern Territory|
|Radar Engineering Unit - Traffic and Highway Patrol Command||New South Wales Police Force - Traffic Services Branch||New South Wales|
|Draeger Services National Service Centre||Draeger Australia Pty Ltd||Victoria|
|Technical Services Laboratory - Road Policing Drug and Alcohol Section||Victoria Police||Victoria|
|Radio and Traffic Technical Support (184) Laboratory||SA Police - Radio and Traffic Technical Support (184)||South Australia|
|CMM Technology and Breathalyser Compliance Testing||Arpels Pty Ltd||West Australia|
Australian laws and regulations do not mandate breathalyser calibration centres to be NATA accredited to provide calibration services for end consumers and corporate clients. However, maintaining stringent standards is important for the proper execution of your company’s alcohol and drug testing policy because the breath alcohol testing results will impact the subsequent appropriate actions to be taken according to the policy. Knowing that the employees’ breath alcohol data is accurate allows a smooth implementation of the policy to create and maintain a safe working environment.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is for general reference only. Please seek advice from professionals according to your business’s needs.
Written by Jaka Exstrada