USA: Mass-Produced “Breathalyser” Cars

The America legislator is set to give the green light to a new piece of “breathalysing” equipment that will be fitted to all new vehicles in the coming years. The device has passive sensors integrated into the driver’s compartment (checking emissions) along with a starter (infrared blood scanner), and it has already been judged to be “unconstitutional” by some: “It’s completely unconstitutional to have our cars commandeered to monitor us for the government”, objected Albert Fox Cahn, the founder of the NGO Surveillance Technology Oversight Project, before adding: “This is no less illegal than if the government mandated that the phone company installed wire taps in everyone’s home just to make sure that they don’t commit a crime in the future.”

Although many are concerned about  possible aberrations and malfunctions in the device, others find it more reassuring and would like to see the equipment become standard in a country where drink driving is responsible for the deaths of 10,000 people every year: “I’ m crying tears of joy” was the reaction of Alex Otte, president of MADD, an NGO that sees this law as a way of saving thousands of lives. “This is the beginning of the end of drunk driving.”

The next step, which everyone would surely agree on, would be to consider a mass roll-out of “Johnny Cab” drivers: to let AI take total control of the vehicle…

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