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New sensor could help reduce impaired driving

Wisconsin residents may be interested to know that according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than 9,900 people are killed each year in drunk driving accidents. The Centers for Disease Control says that 88,000 people each year die from alcohol-related causes. However, a new patch that looks like a temporary tattoo could tell a driver if he or she is too impaired by alcohol to drive. The patch causes the skin to perspire and then monitors the electrical current flowing through that sweat.

Data is then sent to a smartphone so that the wearer can see if they are safe to drive. The patch is intended to be a less invasive and intimidating way for users to monitor their blood alcohol levels without the need for a breathalyzer or a blood test. According to the creators of this patch, the test takes less than 10 minutes to analyze blood alcohol levels.

Other sweat tests take about two to three hours to come up with a result. The results of the research into this product were published in ACS Sensors in July 2016. Research was conducted by engineers at the University of California, San Diego and was funded by the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering.

If a driver is found to be operating under the influence of alcohol, he or she could face serious consequences. Therefore, drivers accused of such crimes may want to talk to an attorney. A lawyer may be able to create a defense that casts doubt on the physical evidence presented. It may also be possible to cast doubt on witness or police testimony in a drunk driving case.

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