US: soon you won’t be able to use your car if drunk [video] image

There are numerous drivers who know the dangers of driving while intoxicated with alcohol but still believe they could outsmart the cops, parents, friends or whoever is in the situation to shun their practice.

It appears now that both SU auto safety regulators and the automakers are taking up the task of bringing to a stop the drunk driving practice – a key reason for today’s high number of motorway fatalities. Last week in Washington a new technology was on display as a show of strength, with the concept system showcased by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The prototype uses an advanced alcohol detection system that one day could be crucial in having a drunk driver stopped even before leaving the parking in his/her car. Called “DADSS” – the Driver Alcohol Detection System for Safety – is designed to be a noninvasive system that can detect if the driver has alcohol levels exceeding the legal limit by way of measuring the breath or skin. If the system detects a blood alcohol level of more than 0.08 percent – the limit in all 50 states – the car will give the driver a surprise, being disabled. The system is not only the work of the federal government, but also of major carmakers and their suppliers.

The system that uses the breath as an analyzer, developed by Sweden’s Autoliv Development, the driver’s natural exhaled breath is tested with a sensor on the steering wheel, using infrared light beams to determine the level of alcohol and carbon dioxide. It’s way less obvious than today’s crop of in-car breathalyzers. The other variant, touch based, the blood alcohol levels under the skin’s surface are observed via an infrared light through the fingertip, which could be integrated into the start button or the steering wheel.

Via Forbes