The title of a recent DUIblog post asked the question "How Far Will They Go?" A recent news release (http://www.theopenpress.com, site no longer active) provides one answer:
New Patented Technology will Eradicate Impaired Driving
Akron, OH. August 18, 2005 — Elaine Futrell, envisioneer and co-patent holder, explained that by virtue of the system's unique design, The Gauntlet SystemTM will detect any type of impairment (alcohol, illegal drugs, prescription drugs, and sleep deprivation) in individuals and also knows when a person is not one of the vehicles' authorized drivers, stopping both from being able to start the vehicle.
According to Futrell, "The Gauntlet SystemTM was designed using proprietary Impairment Detection TechnologyTM (IDT) which is based upon the medically accepted principal that impaired individuals have diminished reaction times. The Gauntlet SystemTM utilizes electronic functions already installed in all vehicles, such as turn signals, wipers, lights, brakes, interior lights, or seat belts, and requires the vehicle operator to perform what amounts to a road side sobriety test before being able to start their vehicle."
Futrell goes on to say, "Vehicle operators must perform 5 or 6 functions – in sequence and within a calculated amount of time – before their vehicle will start"…
At Gauntlet Technology Systems' urging, New Mexico earlier this year enacted legislation broadening the definition of an ignition interlock device to include new technology like The Gauntlet System. New Mexico also introduced and passed legislation mandating an ignition interlock device for ALL offenders, not just repeat offenders.
"The technology to fully address impaired driving and eradicate this epidemic is finally here. The market for this type of technology increased ten-fold with the passage of that legislation," states Futrell. Futrell has already been in contact with numerous other states wanting to follow New Mexico's example. [Emphasis added]
Finally, the answer to the drunk driving sourge: Make us all perform field sobriety tests before we can start our cars. Good idea — if you aren't relatively young and well-coordinated, with quick reactions, good memory, not in a hurry and don't get flustered taking tests. And if you haven't borrowed the car. Or rented it. Or the gizmo doesn't malfunction. Or….
(Thanks to Patrick Barone of Birmingham, Michigan.)