Russia Eyes Factory In-car Breathalyzers
That shiny new Lada you’ve always wanted might one day come with an unexpected bit of equipment: an ignition interlock set free by non-boozy breath.
That’s what Russia’s industry ministry would like to see installed in cars before they even leave the factory, but reaching this goal — like trying to put on a pair of tight-fitting shoes after polishing off a 26er of Stolichnaya — will likely prove a challenge.
Boozy Drivers Hold Impromptu Slumber Party in Detroit-area Drive-thru
It seems a rowdy (or perhaps lonely) Valentine’s Day evening turned into a somnambulant early morning in Troy, Michigan, where police responded to a report of more than one driver asleep in a McDonald’s drive-thru lane at the same time.
If you’ve ever found yourself stuck behind a solitary crossover or minivan in which every last occupant is ordering a full meal — with very specific condiment criteria — this boozy drive-thru tale could be your worst nightmare.
'A Serious Erosion of Civil Liberties': Backlash Grows Over Canada's New Impaired Driving Laws
Can you be pulled over and ordered to blow into a breathalyzer, under threat of arrest, for the simple act of returning empty liquor bottles in the middle of the day? Sure can, at least if you’re living north of the border. It happened to a 70-year-old man in Mississauga, Ontario last weekend.
As part of a massive package of laws enacted in mid-December, Canadian drivers are waking up to the knowledge that the legal standard of “reasonable suspicion” no longer exists when it comes to interactions with the police — at least when pertaining to the combination of alcohol and motor vehicles.
This week, they’re learning it’s possible to face a drunk driving charge, even if you only started drinking after you got home.
With Legal Weed Just Days Away, Canuck Cops Wonder How to Get Blood From a Stone(d Driver)
The large country just north of Cleveland will make it legal to buy and consume marijuana on October 17th, no doubt turning the air in this author’s neighborhood even skunkier that it already is.
With the lifting of prohibitive laws comes new driving-related legislation designed to crack down on stoned drivers and placate a somewhat nervous public. Problem is, law enforcement’s tool chest remains pretty bare. The one government-approved method available to cops to check if a driver is stoned — a saliva test — might not work if it’s cold out. Whoops.
Don’t worry, though — there’s always a blood test. It’s the only way to ensure the not-always-accurate saliva test returned a true reading, but there’s a big problem with that, too: time.
Sorry, Canadians - You'll Still Lose Your Driver's License for Being Tipsy in a Rowboat
Some might quibble over where “the limit” should be when we’re talking drunk driving — 0.05, 0.08, 0.10 — but few responsible people would argue against the need for impaired driving legislation. Until smartphones and other distracting electronic accoutrements came along, boozy drivers were the leading cause of carnage on the roads.
Now, many of us our personal vehicle to drive to the lake, the seaside, or perhaps a nearby river, where our boat, be it large or small, awaits. Maybe it’s a canoe or kayak. Maybe — because cabin cruiser dollars are hard to come by — it’s an inflatable mattress or inner tube where you can use your feet for propulsion.
Well, if you reside north of the border and were thinking of popping a few beers and paddling about in your human-powered floatation device (after hearing Canada’s recent announcement that drunk driving laws would no longer apply to unmotorized boats), think again. Special interest groups have intervened, and that law will remain on the books.
Drunk paddling? There goes your Chevrolet.
Freaky Friday: Cops Stop Lincoln Town Car With No Doors or Windshield, Axe Stuck in Roof
When Jared Price tooled through a small town on Monday in a Lincoln Town Car missing all four doors, bereft of any license plate, and with a gaping hole where the windshield was supposed to be (but equipped with an axe embedded, Excalibur style, in the roof) it’s not surprising the local sheriff’s department received a report of a “suspicious vehicle.”
Freaky Friday: When Your Truck Sings the Song of Six, but the Badge Reads 'Hemi'
Don’t you hate it when you’ve bragged to your friends for months about the brawny V8 engine in your Ram 1500, only to check the oil one day and discover it’s a V6?
That’s the joke Fiat Chrysler Automobiles accidentally played after a badging mix-up at the assembly plant. Also in the news this week is a Canadian town that tortures drunk drivers with godawful Nickelback tunes, as well as an Australian suspect who stopped for gas a number of times during a high-speed police pursuit.
That Breathalyzer You Bought Online Won't Save Your License: Study
Thanksgiving is past and the coming month promises plenty of opportunities for socially acceptable, clove-scented boozing. Some beverages placed in hand — egg nog, for example — can easily pack enough liquor to make a sailor’s eyes water, while the drinker remains unaware of the serving size.
No problem, you say. You’ve bought a civilian breathalyzer, or perhaps the bar you’re at provides one. Got it all covered. Once that device delivers the green light, bam — it’s motoring time! Any police impaired driving checkpoint you encounter should pass your sober ass with flying colors, right?
So wrong. The majority of breathalyzers tested in a recent study failed miserably.
2015 Traffic Death Spike is the Highest in 50 Years
Traffic deaths skyrocketed last year by the largest amount since 1966, erasing safety gains made in recent years.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration released raw 2015 data yesterday, revealing that 35,092 people died on U.S. roads — a 7.2 percent spike in fatalities compared to the previous year. The data shows the deaths weren’t confined to any particular demographic.
Truck Careens Through Two States Before Cops Shoot Out Tire; Tased Driver Puts Up a Fight
In the made-for-TV movie Duel, a somewhat legendary film for car enthusiasts, Steven Spielberg and Richard Matheson tapped into drivers’ primal fear of being harassed by a malevolent trucker at the wheel of a semi much larger than their own vehicles.
Drivers in Indiana and Michigan experienced a non-fiction form of that fear last week, when a possibly drugged truck driver sideswiped cars as he drove erratically for almost 50 miles before police shot out one of the truck’s driving tires. The driver then punched a police dog and it took a number of officers to corral and restrain him even after he was tasered.
Around 8:30 p.m. last Thursday, May 26, Indiana State Police started receiving cellphone calls from drivers on eastbound Interstate 94 near Portage, Indiana. The drivers all reported a metal-hauling semi hitting construction barrels and sideswiping cars.
By the time Michigan State Police managed to stop him, the driver of the truck had traveled 48 miles from the time of the first reports. That highway is the main route between Chicago and Detroit and at that time of the evening, traffic is still pretty heavy as drivers sweep around the southern tip of Lake Michigan. It was fortunate that nobody was injured in the incident, according to Mlive.com.
Reefer Madness: 'Driving While High' Laws Aren't Based on Science, Says Study
Impairment tests used by authorities in U.S. states where marijuana use is legal in some form have no basis in science, and their results essentially mean nothing, a recent study concludes.
Commissioned by the American Automobile Association’s safety foundation, the study found that no blood test for THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, can accurately determine a driver’s level of impairment, the Associated Press reports.
The finding blows law enforcement’s main method of convicting high drivers into the weeds.
Cars and Cocaine Are a Helluva Mix at This Audi Dealership
A pissed-off motorist wants the world to know that a service technician working at a dealership that might take rolled-up bills as a downpayment took his car on an alleged powder-fueled joyride. And he has dashcam video of the whole thing.
A revealing video posted to Youtube yesterday by user “Carrera Chris” documents the April 12 point-of-view journey of his vehicle as it leaves a Palo Alto Audi dealership with the technician behind the wheel.
How Many People Have Been Killed While Taking a Selfie Behind the Wheel? Two.
Or, at least, that’s what this nifty, little, easily digestible graph from Priceonomics would lead you to believe.
The often utilized and equally abhorred selfie, the act of recording a moment in time of thyself, has been directly linked to the deaths of two people while driving, according to news reports compiled by Priceonomics. That pales in comparison to the 16 people who’ve fallen from great heights to their deaths in their personal quests to capture that perfect MySpace-esque profile pic.
Or, you know, impaired driving deaths.
NHTSA: Marijuana Use Not Likely To Increase Accident Risk
Planning to light one up before visiting the local drive-thru taquería? The NHTSA says marijuana use might not increase the risk of an accident after all.