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Congress Mandates Technologies to Stop Drunk Driving

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U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg addresses the new requirement of automakers.

About $17 billion is allotted to road safety programs, the biggest increase in such funding in decades, according to the Eno Center for Transportation.

Credit: Susan Walsh/AP

The U.S. Congress is requiring automakers to develop in-car technologies that prevent drunk driving, as part of an auto safety push included in the $1-trillion infrastructure package.

The measure requires automakers to build monitoring systems to stop the intoxicated from driving into new vehicles as soon as 2026, once the U.S. Transportation Department determines the best solution and automakers have had sufficient time to comply.

The legislation specifies only that the systems must "passively monitor the performance of a driver of a motor vehicle to accurately identify whether that driver may be impaired."

Sam Abuelsamid of market intelligence firm Guidehouse Insights said infrared cameras are the most likely solution, and companies including General Motors, BMW, and Nissan already use them to track driver attentiveness in partially automated driver-assist systems.

From Associated Press
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