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Senator pushes for technology aimed at preventing drunk driving

While having a drink at a social event once or twice might not seem like such a bad idea, it can turn into a disaster when accusations of drunk driving are thrown around. Police and prosecutors won't hesitate to press charges against those they think have been engaged in drunk driving. In fact, one U.S. Senator from New York -- Senator Chuck Schumer -- is co-sponsoring a new piece of legislation that would promote technology to help stop people from drinking and driving.

Known as the ROADS SAFE Act, this bill would help advance technology that would prevent a car from starting if the driver's blood alcohol content level is above 0.08 percent. This would be done through sensors that could detect whether a driver is under the influence of alcohol through touch or through the driver's breath. The Act would provide $6 million in funding for the development of this new technology.

The senator believes that current technology used to detect drunk drivers, such as ignition interlock devices are not convenient and could impede drivers who are not drunk. The senator believes it would cost no more than $200 to have the new technology placed in vehicles. He would like to see it as an option for all drivers but be mandatory for those who have been convicted of drunk driving.

It is reported that over 8,300 drunk driving accidents took place in New York in 2013. Of those accidents, 358 of them resulted in fatalities. While this new technology may prevent people from driving while intoxicated, it should not be used as a means to unfairly treat sober drivers. Drivers who believe they have been falsely accused of DWI should do what it takes to clear their name. Often, this entails seeking the help of an attorney, who can represent them through the legal process and fight for a reduction in charges or an acquittal.

Source: Brooklyn Daily Eagle, "Schumer says technology can stop drunk drivers," Paula Katinas, July 29, 2015

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