Potential drunk drivers now have an app for that

Potential drunk drivers now have an app for that

(PhysOrg.com) -- You have spent the night out on the town and had a few drinks with friends. At the end of the evening, you figure you have only had a few drinks. You should be fine to drive right? While this is something that is heard in many bars throughout the country, there is now a new app designed to help you determine if you are indeed sober enough to be driving.

The new iPhone app, known as BreathalEyes, uses the iPhone camera to record and measure a person’s Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus (HGN).

This HGN is the involuntary eye movement that can occur when a person is impaired by alcohol and is one of the many different field sobriety tests that are conducted by police officers.

By having a person look into the iPhone camera, the app is able to measure this movement in a 10 second test and then lets drivers know if they are under the influence.

While this app is legally marketed for entertainments purposes only, it has been tested alongside a standard breathalyzer. The results show that the new app has an effective range of 0.02 - 0.18 percent and a (+/-) 0.02 percent accuracy of blood alcohol content, or BAC, levels.

The disadvantage of this app is you cannot administer it to yourself. You will have to have a friend with a steady hand hold the camera. The test must also be conducted in good lighting so that leaves most bars or clubs out.

Currently this app is only available for the 4 or later but the company has plans to have an Android available within the year for the low cost of only $0.99.


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Citation: Potential drunk drivers now have an app for that (2012, January 9) retrieved 23 September 2021 from https://phys.org/news/2012-01-potential-drunk-drivers-app.html
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