Drunk drivers detected using a roadside laser
The latest effort to combat drunk driving has landed in the form of a new roadside laser, which is capable of detecting alcohol vapour levels within moving cars.
A study published in the Journal of Applied Remote Sensing states that researchers have created a laser device which was able to detect alcohol vapours at concentrations as low as 0.1 per cent. However, the device may also pick up cars with drunken passengers aboard or perhaps if there is spilled alcohol in the car somewhere. Actually a friend of mine failed a breathalyser as he had recently had a eucalyptus sweet – perhaps this laser will pick up that too!
The device works by utilising a laser and a mirror, where the laser beam is passed through the vehicle and bounced back by the mirror on the other side of the road. If alcohol is detected, an image of the car along with a message will be sent to police officers waiting down the road. The device is said to increase the efficiency of the police’s efforts to stop drunken drivers, whilst reducing the number of cars that have to be checked.
The researchers are investigating the creation of a more compact system and also looking at scenarios that can potentially affect its accuracy. Although we are not expecting to see these lasers set up on the road sides any time soon, we would still suggest that you appoint a designated driver before having a boozy night out!