There's No App for Safe Drunk Driving
There's an app for just about everything these days. But what we cannot tolerate are apps that enable law-breakers and endanger others.
It came to my attention recently that a number of smartphone apps are available to help individuals evade DWI checkpoints and drive drunk.
One application contains a database of DWI checkpoints updated in real-time. Another application, with more than 10 million users, also allows users to alert each other to DWI checkpoints in real time.
These apps are realistically only going to help one person: a driver who's had too much to drink.
And with more than 10,000 Americans dying in drunk driving-related crashes each year, we need to be stopping, not helping that drunk driver.
This week, I joined Senators Reid, Schumer and Lautenberg in calling for smartphone manufacturers Apple, Google, and Research in Motion (RIM) to remove these DWI apps.
On Wednesday, I was pleased to see that RIM has removed these apps from BlackBerry App World, and I hope the others we reached out to will do the right thing, too.
Modern technology holds great promise for new ways to stop drunk drivers from getting behind the wheel, along with new ways to spread the word about the dangers and consequences of driving drunk. But it also provides new opportunities to evade our laws.
Technology has allowed millions of Americans to have information at their fingertips, but giving drunk drivers a free tool to evade checkpoints, putting innocent families and children at risk, is a matter of public concern.