device. The legislation was named after six- year-old Emma Longstreet. Her father, David, a dedicated MADD volunteer, is an example of our commitment to passing strong laws to protect the public. Rhode Island passed similar legislation after years of stalled progress. In 2011, Connecticut passed a law that technically required all convicted drunk drivers to use ignition interlocks. Unfortunately, Connecticut also allowed first time offenders to enter into a diversion program that did not include an interlock requirement. This year, at MADD’s urging, Connecticut changed its diversion program to require participants to use an interlock in order to complete the program. Finally, Kansas removed a sunset provision from its interlock law that would have ended the interlock program in 2015. THE DRIVER ALCOHOL DETECTION SYSTEM FOR SAFETY, OR DADSS, ALSO CONTINUED TO MAKE STEADY PROGRESS IN 2014. The initial five year agreement for DADSS began in 2008 between the Automotive Coalition for Traffic Safety, which represents 17 of the world’s leading automakers, and NHTSA. DADSS set a goal to develop and test prototypes to be considered for vehicle integration. During the first five years, DADSS focused on research and creation of proof of concept prototypes to determine whether there were promising technologies on the horizon. After extensive research, it was determined that the technology is possible and that two technology options would be explored:
• A breath-based system, which uses carbon dioxide in addition to alcohol as a measure of dilution in a driver’s exhaled breath rather than requiring a driver to blow into a tube; • A touch-based system, which uses near infrared light to measure the concentration of alcohol through the driver’s skin. As part of the Federal highway bill, known as MAP-21, which passed the House and Senate in 2012, the U.S. Congress authorized a funding increase for DADSS to continue the program. Automakers and NHTSA agreed and entered into a second five-year agreement. The new hope is that by 2018, advanced technology will be available to the public that could prevent an impaired driver from starting his or her vehicle. In the current phase, additional research and testing will allow further refinement of the technology to reduce the size of the systems and close gaps in performance relating to speed, accuracy and precision. During this phase, field operational tests with sensors integrated in vehicles will be performed to develop an understanding of the driver behavior in a naturalistic setting in various environments. Currently, the test vehicle is in Sweden being outfitted with the breath-based technology. The vehicle is expected to return to the United States in 2015 where it will be outfitted with the touch-based technology.
TO LEARN MORE ABOUT THE PROJECT, VISIT DADSS.ORG
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