Senators Rick Scott and Tom Udall introduced a bill, backed by Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), requiring automobile makers to build cars and trucks with passive detection systems to prevent vehicles from operating when an impaired driver is behind the wheel. With new technology, a push is underway to pass this federal legislation.
Senators Scott and Udall’s bill is named the Reduce Impaired Driving for Everyone Act (RIDE Act). This act is intended to provide additional funding for continued research and road testing for the systems. A timeline of about four years is being suggested to put the technology on the market. However, many hope this can be as early as fiscal 2021.
Many states already require convicted drunk drivers to have passive detection systems, such as ignition interlocks. These devices require drivers to exhale in a Breathalyzer-like device. They prevent a vehicle from starting if a person’s blood-alcohol level is above the legal limit.
The Washington Post reported in October 2019 that researchers and engineers have been working to develop newer technology to obtain instantaneous and precise readings of every driver’s blood alcohol level when the driver tries to start a vehicle. There already is limited road testing underway in Maryland and Virginia. Safety advocates hope the technology will become standard, like the airbag.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that nearly 11,000 people were killed as a result of drunk driving in 2017. On average, this is about one death every 48 minutes.
Some advocates are accusing both the auto industry and federal transportation safety officials of moving too slowly since the government-funded research program involving more than a dozen automakers has already spent $50 million to develop the Driver Alcohol Detection System for Safety (DADSS).
A former NHTSA administrator, Joan Claybrook, said, “This is one of the most exciting issues I’ve ever seen for alcohol issues, and I’ve been working on them since 1966.”
“We at Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A. see the devastating results of accidents caused by the negligence of drunk or drugged drivers. We urge everyone to set a priority of improving safety for all of us. Should you or a loved one be injured in an accident caused by a negligent driver, please contact our experienced legal team. We are always available, and there are no costs or attorney fees until we make a monetary recovery for you,” said Fort Myers DUI Accident Attorney Randall Spivey.
Fort Myers DUI Accident Attorney, Randall L. Spivey is a Board Certified Trial Attorney – the highest recognition for competence bestowed by the Florida Bar and a distinction earned by just one (1%) percent of Florida attorneys. He has handled over 2,000 personal injury and wrongful death cases throughout Florida. For a free and confidential consultation to discuss your legal rights, contact the Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A., in Lee County at 239.337.7483 or toll-free at 1.888.477.4839, or by email to Randall@SpiveyLaw.com. Visit SpiveyLaw.com for more information. You can contact Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A.in Charlotte County at 941.764.7748 and Collier County 239.793.7748.