New Technology Aims to Keep Drunk Drivers off the Road for Good
The battle to stop drivers from getting behind the wheel when they are intoxicated has been going on for decades. Lawmakers and advocacy groups continue to introduce new legislation and programs to prevent drunk drivers from getting on the road and to penalize them more harshly when they do. Everyone can agree that the roads are safer when people who have had too much to drink are not driving. To that end, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has announced a new technology that might be able to stop intoxicated drivers from operating a vehicle.
The NHTSA recently presented two different alcohol detection prototypes, which they hope will be available for use within five years. One of the technologies, which are known as Alcohol Detection System for Safety, or DADSS, is aimed at detecting alcohol particles in someone’s breath. The technology is very similar to the current ignition interlock devices that many convicted drunk drivers are ordered to install in their vehicles. However, the difference with this device is that it would not require a driver to blow into a mechanism, but rather it would detect alcohol particles via air samples.
Meantime, the other new technology would be used to determine a person’s blood alcohol content simply by touch. The device would shine a light on the person’s finger and with its “near-infrared tissue spectroscopy” it would determine the person’s blood alcohol level. If it were above 0.08 then the vehicle would not start. The NHTSA has been working with automakers on the technology for several years and if it is eventually implemented, car owners could include this an option in their vehicles in order to prevent drunk drivers from ever getting on the road. At this point it will not be required, but will be an optional piece of equipment.
This new technology could be a very powerful tool to help prevent people from driving under the influence. However, it’s also important to remember that not everyone who is arrested and accused of drunk driving is actually guilty. People are accused of driving under the influence every day, but there are many circumstances that can lead to DUI accusations. Sometimes the evidence is not always as it appears at first glance. That’s why it’s important for anyone who has been charged with an OWI/DUI to seek the help of an experienced DUI defense attorney.