More and more states are coming on board with all offender ignition interlock laws, and it’s all because people are starting to recognize how these devices make roads safer for everyone on them.
That might be why you’re starting to see ignition interlock accessories pop up that can add convenience or another layer of safety to the device. Take the scientists at the University of California for example: they’ve designed a flexible, wearable skin patch that will measure someone’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) through their sweat, shares the data with the user, and can be integrated with an ignition interlock.
The skin patch is attached to a person’s skin and it works to induce sweat. Using the sweat, the device detects a person’s alcohol level by connecting to a magnet that’s part of a portable flexible electronic circuit board. It then sends the data via Bluetooth to your smartphone.
The skin patch works in as fast as fifteen minutes, and it’s on a completely different playing field than a breathalyzer because it detects minute amounts of alcohol through sweat and not breath. When you integrate it with an ignition interlock, you have a simple and seamless way to monitor yourself before you blow and possibly violate your interlock program.
The UC scientists felt that the skin patch is a convenient way to check your alcohol consumption when you’ve been drinking, and it is exactly that. Having a steady stream of BAC updates sent to your smartphone when you’ve been drinking could change your mind about putting your keys in the ignition of your car, and if you’ve already got an DUI conviction and you’re driving with an ignition interlock, it could save you from making a big mistake: trying to start your car when you’ve been drinking.