Are you ready for a nanny cam in your car?
Volvo thinks that may be the best solution to the plague of drunk or distracted drivers that's hitting the nation -- and the company may have a point.
Combined with a camera, Volvo is adding other features to its cars that are designed to keep drivers off the road when they aren't safe to be behind the wheel. This will include not just drivers who have had too much to drink, but also drivers who are falling asleep while driving, those who are distracted by their telephones or something else and drivers who are having medical problems.
The vehicles will use a combination of sophisticated algorithms in their software, sensors and automated prompts when it senses a driver is in trouble. If a driver fails to respond adequately to the vehicle's system, the automated intelligence program would take over. It would first slow down the vehicle, then stop the vehicle entirely while using the automated program to call for emergency assistance.
The technology isn't entirely new. Several different models of vehicles, like the "Super Cruise" equipped Cadillac, already have cameras aimed at their drivers. Some will even suggest that a driver take a break for coffee. Volvo just seems to be taking the lead with the most aggressive version of the safety-oriented technology.
While not everyone is a fan of this type of system, the ultimate goal is to get everyone home safely -- including the impaired driver. However, it's important to remember that you can't get behind the wheel of a car while inebriated and rely on its automated driving features to save you from a drunk driving ticket. (Trust us, someone has already tried.) If you make a mistake, however, and find yourself facing a DWI charge, do yourself a favor and get an experienced defense attorney to assist you.