Invention Of The Week? DADSS Car System Won’t Let You Drive Drunk

Technology is sure amazing these days and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in the United States is utilizing it to its fullest in order to curtail drunk driving and perhaps put an end to it for good.

You see, in a few years-or-so year vehicles will be built to include the Driver Alcohol Detection System For Safety (DADSS). This means that for every car built they will all be installed with touch-based technology that automatically measures your blood alcohol concentration once you enter your vehicle.

The amount of deaths caused from drunk driving is staggering: According to the NHTSA, 28 people die each day as a result from someone behind the wheel while under the influence (that’s over 10,000 people a year).

The NHSTA has teamed up with the Department of Transportation and a large number of automotive giants to install the DADSS technology in new vehicles. It is widely anticipated that General Motors (GM) will be the first to adopt this technology in all their new model vehicles.

Touch-Based Technology

DADSS is a system that relies on spectroscopy to identify the alcohol level in a driver’s tissue.

According to a paper promoting DADSS: “the touch-based system analyzes alcohol found beneath the skin’s surface (or more specifically, the blood alcohol content detected in the capillaries).”

Measurement is taken through infrared technology. When a driver enters the vehicle, a low-powered light probes the skin and then instantly explores the skin tissue. “A portion of the light is then reflected back to the skin’s surface, where it is collected by the touch pad. This light contains information on the skin’s unique chemical properties, including the concentration of alcohol.”

The touch-pads will be placed in the push-button to start the car or they will be located in the steering wheel, depending on the model of the car and the preference of the owner.

So this means that when someone hops in their car and the system detects a blood alcohol concentration level of 0.008 or higher, then the wheels won’t start.

 “DADSS has enormous potential to prevent drunk driving in specific populations such as teen drivers and commercial fleets, and making it an option available to vehicle owners would provide a powerful new tool in the battle against drunk driving deaths,” says Mark Rosekind, who heads up the NHTSA.

Will DADSS Save Over 10,000 Lives?

Rosekind is very optimistic that DADSS will help stop drunk drivers from operating a vehicle.

“Drunk driving takes a life every 58 minutes in America,” he explains. “But it doesn't have to be this way. And soon, we might have the right technology that essentially takes the keys out of drunk drivers' hands before they can hurt or kill our neighbors and loved ones.

He adds, “When installed in a vehicle, the system will instantly and accurately detect if a driver is above the legal alcohol limit and will prevent the vehicle from moving. With 10,076 people lost to drunk driving in 2013, you can understand why everyone at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is excited about the possibility of bringing this technology to our nation's cars and trucks."

DADSS will also provide the option for a breathalyzer check. Again, if the system detects there a blood alcohol concentration of 0.008 or higher, then the vehicle will not go anywhere.

Technology is powerful and DADSS is certainly promising news on tackling the issue of drunk driving and most of all it will help save lives.

With new technology like DADSS, many question whether or not the price of cars, SUVs and trucks will go up. Still, even if prices go up it’s for a good cause.

Keeping our roads and citizens safe is certainly a good thing.

Drunk driving is now taboo, thankfully, and technology like this will make a difference and keep our streets safer.

DADSS is inventing a new world, one without drunk driving.