Drunk Driver-Proof Technology Could Be Installed Into Our Cars

Chloe Stevenson Contributor
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It is no mystery drunk driving is one of the nation’s leading sources of death. Even with the continual advertisements and groups adamantly advising against drunk driving, there has been no solid conclusion to the problem. Other than police officers patrolling for drunk drivers, what exactly stops a drunk driver putting their keys into the car’s ignition and heading down the road?

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, alongside automakers, have been attempting to introduce a technology that will put drunk driving out of existence, according to Fox News. If this technology, called Alcohol Detection System, proves adequate and successful, thousands of lives will be saved in the process.

So, how exactly would this technology work without being a complete invasion of privacy? According to the Driver Alcohol Detection System for Safety (DADSS), not only would this technology stray away from bulky breathalyzers but DADSS (producer of technology) claims this would be a totally voluntary installment.

Making the installment completely optional makes the system unobtrusive and virtually unnoticeable and DADSS released a detailed video explaining how the Alcohol Detection System functions.

In a phone interview, Sarah Longwell of the American Beverage Institute (ABI) explained that the system would function on two levels: breath detectors using infrared sensors and touch-based detectors of light absorption.

Ideally, these systems would be located either on the steering wheel of the car or in the driver’s door handles. The system would be set at the legal limit of .08 BAC. Alcohol Detection Systems’s overall goal is to make this equipment equivalent to standard car devices such as seat-belts and airbags.

The ABI’s representative have their own questions concerning the system.

The first question involves the level that the Alcohol Detection System is set. Longwell states if the system indeed does not start if the driver’s BAC is above legal limit that excludes binge drinkers who had just taken multiple shots in a short amount of time. They may test under a .08 but their level would increase the longer they drive.

Her overall question, though, is if the system is voluntary, will the drunk drivers actually be willing to install it? Could this voluntary installment be mandated? These questions will have to be answered as to get everyone on board this project.

Longwell uses the term s”low walking” when referencing this technology and its producers. There are still many kinks in the system as it is fairly new and premature, but it has the ability to gain supporters. Groups such as Mom’s Against Drunk Driving (MADD) and Dad’s Against Drunk Driving (DADD) are advocates of this new database.

If the Alcohol Detection System works, the tragedies produced by drunk driving will be greatly reduced.