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Automakers aim to stop drunk drivers behind the wheel

Drunk driving poses a serious hazard to roadway safety in Pennsylvania and across the country. Despite enforcement crackdowns and widespread awareness campaigns, DUIs continue to be the leading cause of death linked to motor vehicles, and thousands more are injured each year. Many are looking for technological solutions that can make it easier to prevent accidents caused by driving under the influence. One option is an ignition interlock device, a sort of breathalyzer for the car. This technology, which is mandated for some DUI offenders, requires drivers to test clean before they can start their cars.

However, automakers are looking toward other solutions that could take advantage of the advances made in autonomous technology. Volvo recently announced that within the next five years it will begin installing technology that can stop drunk drivers without depending on a breath test. The Volvo system would include cameras with algorithms trained to detect signs of a drunk driver.

The cameras will work in conjunction with sensors monitoring for dangerous driving behavior, such as veering wildly out of lane, a lack of interaction with the steering wheel and notably slowed reaction times. If the sensor detects these car accident risks, it will alarm, notifying the motorist to pull over. If the operator again fails to respond, autonomous assistance technology would pull the car to the side of the road, slow down and stop.

Technology presents a great deal of promise for reducing the number of auto collisions on the road, but people continue to face serious risks on a daily basis. Someone who has been injured in a drunk driving accident may work with a personal injury lawyer to pursue a settlement.

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