Watch out! The Textalyser is coming
Even as the car industry plunges headlong into the realm of Connected Cars, giving the operator of such vehicles the ability to enjoy the entirety of the internet whilst on the move, there is a growing movement to create a device to determine whether any driver in an accident was distracted by online activities, particularly texting, at the time of the incident.
Ladies and gentlemen, we give you the Textalyser, a device that is reported to be able to allow the Police to analyse your phone at the scene of any fender-bender, and find out if you were otherwise engaged or not at the time. New York politicians, Terrence Murphy and Felix Ortiz, with the assistance of Distracted Operators Risk Causalities, an awareness organisation often referred to as DORC (Dorks, geddit?), are to introduce a bill in the New York Assembly that will give the Police the right to demand your phone for analysis, should they so desire; refusal to comply will result in the suspension of your license, regardless whether you were at fault or not.
Ben Liebermann, the co-founder of DORC, who tragically lost his 19-year-old son Evan in a distracted driver accident, has been working with the Israeli firm Cellebrite to create the device, and is trying to change public perception much in the same way the breathalyser did all of those years ago.
“When people were held accountable for drunk driving, that’s when positive change occurred,” Lieberman said in a press release. “It’s time to recognise that distracted driving is a similar impairment, and should be dealt with in a similar fashion. This is a way to address people who are causing damage.”
Ben may well have a point. In the US of A, nine people die and some 1153 are injured daily due to distracted driver incidents, which make up almost 20% of all accidents.