US cars may have anti-alcohol controls as standard

US cars may have anti-alcohol controls as standard

Within the biden administration's infrastructure revitalization plan, there is a bill that specifically affects measures against drunk driving. The draft, which is part of a $ 78 billion recovery plan for transport, talks about new technologies that detect if the driver is drunk and take action on their own. Basically, what a Tesla Model S did last week, avoiding the hospital (or worse) to its owner.

The problem of accidents caused by alcohol consumption is still very relevant in the United States, where a quarter of road deaths are caused by drunk drivers. About 10,000 people lose their lives every 365 days on American roads because someone has raised their elbow too much, a situation that does not find improvement despite the severe penalties. Moving to our country, thanks to the blockades of the Coronavirus pandemic, accidents saw a sharp decrease last year. But those caused by alcohol and drugs are on the rise, according to the latest figures released by ACI and Istat.

Returning to the US government, it is not clear which system will be used when (and if) the proposal becomes law. In the past, several car manufacturers had proposed and built detectors capable of recording the presence of alcohol in the passenger compartment from air analyzes. Combined with special control units and dedicated software, the system could warn passengers in the case of a minimum quantity or completely prevent the car from starting if we are over the maximum allowed. A useful solution for many already heavily drunk drivers who often do not even realize the dangers they face.

The simplest solution is represented by what is already present on many recent cars, in the various driving assists. The internal cameras and sensors on the steering wheel keep an eye on the driver and intervene in the event of suspicious behavior. The car then proceeds to slow down and stop or, if this happens during a maneuver, to complete it automatically.

As always when talking about computers and the like, questions remain about the real reliability of these technologies in all situations. But if the fines are not enough and many ignore the risks, there are not many alternatives to solve the problem.

Have you gone too far with alcohol and have to drive? To find out if you risk penalties, there is the portable breathalyzer sold on Amazon.

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