"SCRAM" Monitors Alcohol Use

Monitoring alcohol addiction with the use of a high tech anklet is keeping Panhandle residents safe and saving tax dollars.

With why the "Secure Continuous Remote Alcohol Monitor" or "SCRAM" is proving to be successful.

"SCRAM" is being used by those with DUI convictions and some criminals with non-alcohol offenses who have a chronic alcohol problem.

"SCRAM" requires the offender to pay twelve dollars a day to wear the anklet instead of spending time in jail at a cost of 44 dollars to taxpayers.

So far the device has saved Potter,Randall, and Armstrong county taxpayers more the 140-thousand dollars.

The probation supervisor says not only is the anklet saving money and keeping drunk drivers off the road but it is helping to stabilize families.

Terry Easterling says, "The money that they're saving by being able to work because you know if you have a severe alcohol problem one of the signs of that is continually missing work, changing jobs, that kind of thing. When they are not drinking they become stably employed. They don't have those marital family problems. You know their whole life stabilizes."

Easterling says the monitoring system has helped some alcoholics recover but is not used as a substitute for professional counseling.