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OGDEN, Utah (AP) -- Some Utah Highway Patrol troopers are becoming medically certified to draw blood from motorists they suspect of driving while intoxicated.
Blood tests are necessary because portable breath tests only detect alcohol -- not drugs or other possible intoxicants.
Without the medical certification, troopers now must either take a suspect to a hospital or call in a certified technician to take a small sample.
Every time a trooper does that, it costs the Highway Patrol 50 or 60 bucks -- adding up to about 25-thousand dollars a year.
Eventually, about 65 troopers will be trained throughout the state in the nominal medical procedures needed to take blood.
The certified troopers will not receive any extra pay for taking the classes or drawing blood.
(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)