Advocacy groups like Mother Against Drunk Driving (MADD) are taking their fight around the legal system and straight to automakers. MADD's initiative known as ‘Secure the Future' works to encourage carmakers to develop vehicles with ignition interlock systems already installed. The idea is that these systems should not be used only by OUI offenders, but by every driver every time they start their vehicle.
An Ignition Interlock Device (IID) requires the driver to breathe into the device before staring their car in order for it to measure the alcohol content in their breath. If the device measures a BrAC over the legal limit of .08%, the car will not start. Most devices also require the driver to periodically re-submit a sample while they are operating the vehicle in order to avoid any chance of cheating.
In 2006, MADD along with government officials and members of the auto industry collaborated to develop this technology a develop Driver Alcohol Detection System for Safety (DADSS). DADSS has helped create two technologies for a standardized IID that can be installed in every new car. One device uses breath samples that in collects from the person in the driver's seat and the other measures BrAC through finger prints.
In order for these devices to be widely accepted, they would have to be unobtrusive as well as extremely accurate. One can only imagine the lawsuits that would spring up if a malfunctioning IID denied a driver access in an emergency situation or caused them to lose their job for tardiness. This technology may one day prove to be very useful but for now gaining wide acceptance may prove to be an issue. Drivers in Maine and throughout the U.S. will likely choose to buy vehicles without these devices when given the option so compliance from all automakers is essential. There is no word yet on how this policy will affect older car models either.