Sharper Image Agrees to Stop Selling Dubious Breathalyzers
SAN FRANCISCO – Electronics retailer Sharper Image agreed on Friday to stop selling personal breathalyzers and pay $1.2 million in restitution as part of a settlement regarding the devices.
The company incorrectly claimed the "Digital Breath Alcohol Tester" devices were accurate to .001 percent blood alcohol content, according to tests by San Diego's Consumer Protection Unit.
Sharper Image also agreed to pay $100,000 in penalties for inaccurately advertising the effectiveness of the testers.
Monterey County and San Diego law enforcement agencies reached a settlement collectively on the consumer protection case.
"The important thing is no one suffered any injury or financial loss," said Terry Spitz, chief assistant district attorney in Monterey County.
The portable devices allegedly measured a person's blood alcohol level on the go and were available in several models.
Another tester called the "Alcohawk," which the company says is approved by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, was still available for sale on the company's Web site on Friday.
The San Francisco-based company admitted no wrongdoing when it agreed to pay the civil penalty, but will issue refunds to customers, Spitz said.
Company officials were not immediately available for comment Friday.