Working closely with Hitachi, Honda has developed an alcohol detection smart key which is portable, so it can not only be used in the vehicle, but anywhere else, reducing the temptation to try and drive whilst under the influence of alcohol.
In 2013, there were 8,270 casualties on roads in Great Britain, due to drink drive accidents, whilst some 14% of deaths in road traffic accidents occurred in incidents where at least one driver was over the drink drive limit. This new Honda alcohol detection smart key will detect 0.015 mg/L, well under the current limit in England of 35 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath.
As well as being so sensitive, it is tamper-proof and cannot be fooled by other gases, as it can identify human breath. The detector can be integrated into a smart key which then acts as an ignition interlock to prevent the engine being started by a driver who has consumed an excess of alcohol. The system reacts to alcohol within three seconds and can also be integrated into the car’s display panel to show the driver’s alcohol level. This is a major step forward in road safety by Honda, aimed at eliminating drink driving and making the roads safer for everyone. The results of Hitachi and Honda’s research was presented at this year’s SAE World Congress in April, where the prototype was also shown. We look forward to this innovative work being introduced on all new cars, making driving even safer.