You Know You’ve Got a Problem When… Russia Wants Auto Companies to Factory Install Breathalyzers

It’s sad, but it’s definitely reminiscent of the old joke that starts, “You know you’ve got a problem when…”

In Russia, they know they have a problem with drunk driving when the government appeals to auto manufacturers to install breathalyzers in the factory as a normal feature.

You know, something like, would you like power seats, power windows, a heated steering wheel, a breathayzer…

Except this wouldn’t be an option, it would be normal, like headlights or seatbelts.

The issue is drunk driving. Last yea, 17,000 Russians died on the road, high much higher incidence per capita than other nations. While Russian alcohol consumption fell an estimated 43% from 2003 to 2016, it’s still a nation of heavy drinkers. The drop in consumption came on the heels of higher alcohol taxes, raising the minimum price for vodka, and clamping down on homebrew.

It won’t be easy to get the Russian automakers to go along with the plan because it adds to their cost. This will be especially hard during the pandemic.

Perhaps instead they could connect all the automatic headlights to the accelerators and limit the speed of vehicles to 15 mph after dark. They might still have an accident, but it wouldn’t hurt as much.

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  1. Jon James

    The final paragraph of this report is nothing short of disrespectful, to be polite. Drink drivers are evil, all DD deaths are needless. Every car in the world should have a breathalyzer linked to the ignition preventing the car from starting if the driver blows over the limit.

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