Drunk driving accidents claim innocent lives. According to the Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention, about 1 in 3 car accident fatalities involve a drunk driver. In Pennsylvania, 4,663 people were killed between 2003 and 2012 due to drunk driving accidents. 1.8% of Pennsylvania drivers who report drinking too much admit to driving afterwards. Different strategies have been employed in hopes of reducing or preventing drunk driving, such as media campaigns, school campaigns, stricter laws, etc.
Related: Our Philadelphia car accident lawyers obtained $4.4 million for a DUI car accident. See more case results.
In the near future, advanced technology in cars may be able to stop drivers from driving drunk. A government-funded research organization, Driver Alcohol Detection System for Safety (DADSS), has been developing new technology in hopes of preventing drunk driving. Though the engineers at DADSS are heading the research, they are also working with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Automotive Coalition for Traffic Safety, an organization representing automakers nationwide. This technology may be car ready within the next 5 to 8 years.
The technology is developed with 2 cutting-edge approaches:
A driver’s breath may be monitored by sensors mounted in front of the driver inside the car. The monitor will measure the driver’s blood alcohol from their breath.
Alcohol may also be measured through touch. When a driver touches a start button or another designated surface in the car, alcohol levels will be measured by a touch-pad with an infrared light scanner.
If the sensors in either of the above approaches measure a certain level (indicating that the driver is drunk), the car will not start. Researchers hope that this technology will end drunk driving and drunk driving accident fatalities.
Though this technology sounds like a good solution to end drunk driving, it may face some difficulties when it comes time to implement it. There are many questions and issues that need to be resolved. Will the technology be mandatory in all new cars? How much will the technology affect the price of new cars? Because alcohol takes time to absorb into the body, a driver who took several shots right before driving could have a blood alcohol content (BAC) within the legal limit when getting in the car. Therefore, the car will start. What happens if the driver causes an accident later, and his BAC is beyond the legal limit? Can the auto maker be responsible for the accident because it couldn’t detect the driver’s BAC at first?
Consequences of Philadelphia Drunk Driving Accidents
Drunk drivers who cause car accidents or pedestrian accidents face legal consequences. They may face criminal charges, as well as being sued by the victims in civil courts.
Individuals who are injured in drunk driving accidents may file a car accident lawsuit against the drunk driver to recover financial compensation, such as medical expenses, lost wages and/or pain and suffering.
For now there is no technology that can stop drivers from drunk driving. Drivers need to be responsible when they drink and refrain from getting behind the wheel. If you are going out with friends and know you will be drinking, have a designated driver or take a taxi to ensure you don’t get behind the wheel.
Help After a Pennsylvania Drunk Driving Accident
If your loved one was injured or killed in a Philadelphia, PA drunk driving accident, talk to our experienced car accident lawyers. We always offer FREE confidential consultations. (866) 641-0806
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*Source: www.usatoday.com (New car tech could stop drunken drivers)