Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Heard On Talk Radio

Quite often as I am driving to and from work, I listen to the radio tuned to a talk radio program that is in my area. They often have some very good topics they talk about. One I heard today involves a legislator in the state of Pennsylvania that wants all car manufacturers to install breathalyser machines in all new vehicles sold in that state. In addition, he wants all cars, new and used, to have them installed by the year 2010.

Mind you it isn't a law as of yet, but, just think about it for a second. Isn't it like the government saying that every driver has been convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol? Not to mention the cost of such devices. I don't know how much one would cost but I heard on the program that I was listening to that the ones they install on peoples cars that have been convicted of such offenses cost 75$ per month to rent. So you can just imagine how much that would add to a new cars price tag. And how much an individual would have to spend just to sell his own car.

The point I disagree with in this strategy is that not everyone drinks and drives and not everyone should have to go through this just to go to the grocery store. Oh yeah, one thing I should mention is that these devices require you to breath into it to test your level of intoxication about every half hour. This means that if you are taking your family on a nice little road trip to see Aunt Martha who is about 2 hours away, the driver will have to breath into this thing about 4 more times. What a joy huh?

The other thing that I disagree with is that this legislator wants the level of intoxication to be able to start your vehicle to be set to about 1/4 the legal limit that is considered intoxicated in that state. So maybe you used Listerine that morning and the amount of alcohol in that might be enough for the car not to start. Or maybe you took some cold medicine that has alcohol in it and that might be enough to make it impossible to start your car.

All in all, I just don't agree with sticking every one who drives a car with this burden of proof that you aren't intoxicated. It's another right or privilege that this legislator is trying to dissolve into thin air. Plus, if this happens to pass and become a law, what will be next? It's just something I have been made aware of and have thought about. Till next time BYE!!

17 comments:

Skittles said...

I agree with you about not punishing people for not being guilty. I can kind of see his logic that there are many drunk drivers who never get caught.. but this seems to be taking things way too far!!!

We have an Aunt Martha?

Daniel Thompson said...

Some cars, especially company vehicles, have multiple drivers. I'm assuming they would have to share the same breathalizer. It seems that there would be an incredible danger of spreading communicable diseases.

AJ said...

Something does need to be done. I live in central Florida and drinking and driving is a huge problem here.

http://dlyc84.blogspot.com

Gene Bach said...

I would think that all you would have to do to get around that would be to carry a can of compressed air with you and shoot that into the device?

Jeni said...

Boy, I have some mixed feelings on this topic. First off, which one of our hair-brained legislators thought of this without thinking of ALL the issues? (Remember, I live in PA!)
But, costs of production aside, which I agree would cause innumerable problems, don't look at this strictly as a form of punishment but rather as an assistive thing too. Do you realize the BAC of .08 (which is pretty much the norm) - anything over that level and you are considered to be dui -actually can be reached by drinking less than 2 beers. Two beers, often doesn't even produce a twinge of a buzz in many if not most people and they then think, hey I'm ok but according to the law you aren't. So, especially for people who rely on their driver's license for their form of employment (truckers, bus drivers, etc.) a dui means they are automatically unemployed. And in instances like those, having a means to know that your bac registers over what is acceptable could save some people lots of money in fines and yes, in some instances, probably save insurance costs for accidents, injuries, etc.
It's kind of a double-edged sword in that it could have some really good effects if it could be done feasibly without incurring a kazillion dollars in manufacturing costs. Gotta look at all sides of this issue here I think.

Sanni said...

Well... and I thought our government comes up with weird ideas...

Missy said...

I would have heard this and been "the hell?" and that would have been the end. You brought up some really good points here. I think it needs a lot more consideration before anything actually happens. Also, how about we just do away with cars altogether? That would solve the problem rather effectively.

Sarge Charlie said...

Big brother at work, how stupid can and elected official be, hummmmmmmmmmmm very stupid.

jolie-jordan said...

Too much f-ing government for me. We need to put a stop to all these laws that are taking every ounce of freedom that is left in America away. Spend that dammed money on getting some medical care for the millions of people who can't afford to see a doctor and arrest the drunks when they catch them. Damn this crap makes me mad. Can you tell?

xxxJolie

Erika said...

That is insane and will never fly. Besides. its so easy to just get someone else to breath into it anyway....

Josh said...

When that happens, I'm going to start my own business by accepting money to breathe in other people's breathalizers.

the108 said...

I don't think that those of us who know how stupid it is to drink and drive should have to be babysat because there are morons out there who haven't yet caught on to it.

It's also sort of jumping the gun a little bit when there are still other ways to raise awareness and to scare the dummies. I have no issue if they want to pass a law that states that the penalty for drinking and driving is attempted murder and can land you in prison, first offense, for a ridiculously long time.

I have friends that will do it and I will simply tell them that if they ever got behind the wheel drunk and killed MY kids on the road, they'd never live to see another morning.

Smalltown RN said...

In theory it's a good idea...but the logistic of such an understaking are mind boggling....to many variables....for starters not everyone drinks .....so why should everyone be penalized.....what about others driving your vehicle...what about the health component of different people breathing into the same apparatus....what about people who come from out of state for a visit...they now become exempt from the apparatus because they are out of state....who is going to monitor that you have one installed....these are just a few questions.....seems all very strange to me...

Asara said...

I know I'm coming into this late, but so far as communicable diseases are concerned, when you take a breathalyzer test (I've had to do this when I hurt myself at work and get sent to the med center), the mouthpieces are disposable. However, that presents its own difficulties, as either everyone would have to have their own mouthpiece, or buy tons of disposable refills. That's not going to win over very many people.

Faz the Cat said...

Interesting debate but I agree with where you net out.

Josh said...

Have you been to THE VAULT yet? Online freedom for people to confess whatever they'd like... anonymously.

Chelle & Chel said...

I agree, Mike. Complicated, costly, annoying ... and for even those of us who don't drink. Seems silly, at the least.

Chelle