The BBC is reporting that Japanese automaker Nissan is developing an inebriation detection system designed to prevent drunk drivers from ever starting the engine. The system combines data from a number of censors that are passively monitoring the driver to determine his/her capacity to operate the vehicle.
It includes odour sensors that monitor breath, detectors which analyse perspiration of the palms, and a camera that checks alertness by eye scan.
If the system thinks a driver has drunk too much, the car will not start.
Nissan, Japan’s third-largest carmaker, says the technology is still being developed, but it will eventually be introduced to reduce road deaths.
The firm says it has no specific timetable, but it aims to cut the number of fatalities involving its vehicles to half the 1995 levels by 2015.
Unlike a built-in breathalyser, which nags the driver to breathe into a plastic tube, it should be harder to fool a system using various sensors. Perhaps Nissan will look into monitoring the driving performance of the person behind the wheel, such as irregular lane movements, as an additional factor in determining the capacity to drive.
More from the BBC…
(hat tip: Medlaunches)