What is the Current State of Drunk Driving Prevention Technology?January 25, 2021
Despite the advances in automobile safety, drunk driving is still prevalent. In fact, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), drunk driving takes the lives of over 30 Americans each day. Auto manufacturers are working on preventative features in their cars to help end drunk driving car accidents.
Recently, the NHTSA has begun acquiring information on vehicle-equipped technology that could prevent a driver from operating their vehicle if under the influence of alcohol. Currently, there are limited tools available to drivers who have committed drunk driving offenses. One tool is an ignition interlock device. The device is attached to a tube that a driver must breathe into to start their car. Even with this modern device, there are states that do not require such equipment for previous offenders, and drunk driving still accounts for almost 10,000 fatalities every year.
What is the Future of Drunk Driving Prevention?
Future drunk driving prevention equipment will detect alcohol on the driver through various methods, mostly with sensors equipped in the cabin area. One device detects the odor of alcohol when the driver attempts to start the vehicle, consequently preventing the engine to start if alcohol is present. There is also the possibility of a device that can read the presence of alcohol in the driver’s breath without the motorist blowing into a tube. These sensors would be found in the front cabin area by the driver and passenger seats, and the motorist would be notified by an alert or alarm.
Another device in development is an alcohol sensor installed onto the shifter, which would read the perspiration of a user’s palm to detect the presence of alcohol. The transmission would then be immobilized, and the driver would be alerted.
Some auto manufacturers are introducing devices that would be on other highly touched surfaces, such as the steering wheel or start button. An infrared light could also shine through the first few layers of the hand’s skin and read alcohol presence there as well. Nissan is also developing facial recognition devices and vehicle direction sensors.
Should Drunk Driving Prevention Equipment be Mandatory?
Drunk driving technology is not a requirement in vehicles, but it is helpful in drunk driving prevention. The NHTSA has found it difficult to make drunk driving prevention technology a requirement. Drunk driving technology is expensive to an auto manufacture, leaving carmakers with a difficult decision. Additionally, car buyers may not want to pay for the extra expense. Though the NHTSA and other government agencies have invested millions of dollars in producing blood alcohol content (BAC) detection technology, the United States has spent over $200 billion in drunk driving accidents in 2017 alone.
What Should I Do After a Drunk Driving Collision?
Drunk driving incidents have dropped over the past few years, but many accidents still occur each year. It is the responsibility of all drivers to practice safe driving habits. Even the smallest amount of alcohol can affect a person’s ability to see and focus. It is a good idea to remind family members and loved ones about the dangers of drunk driving.
If a person is hit by a drunk driver, they should seek legal representation as soon as possible. Car accidents injuries are often severe and costly, so it is important to collect compensation in order to cover the costs of medical bills.
Delaware County Car Accident Lawyers at the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello Help Clients Injured by Drunk and Negligent Drivers
Although auto technology has greatly improved over the last few years, drunk driving accidents still happen. If you were injured by a drunk driver, a Delaware County car accident lawyer at the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello can help you with your case. Contact us online or call us at 610-892-4940 for a free consultation. Located in Media, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Lancaster, Montgomery County, Norristown, Philadelphia, Reading, and West Chester, Pennsylvania.