Ford unveils drugged driving suit
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Ford of Europe has come up with a driving suit that simulates what its like to drive under the influence of illicit drugs.
The new suit is said to simulate some of the effects of drugs, such as marijuana, cocaine, heroin and MDMA or ecstasy. Ford developed the suit association with the Meyer-Hentschel Institute in Germany and it is a follow up to last year’s drunk driving suit.
It features weights and bandages on the wrist, neck, elbow, ankle and knee to slow and restrict movement, as well as affect balance. There’s also a set of headphones that play distracting background sounds, googles that impair vision and cause tunnel vision, and a tremor generator that causes the hands to shake.
Gundolf Meyer-Hentschel, CEO of the Meyer-Hentschel Institute, says: “We know that some drugs can cause trembling hands, so we incorporated a device into the suit that creates just such a tremor.
“Drug users sometimes see flashing lights in their peripheral field, an effect recreated by our goggles, while imaginary sounds are generated by the headphones. Additionally, the goggles distort perception, and produce colorful visual sensations, a side effect of LSD use.”
According to the latest data from the USA’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), around 18 percent of all motor vehicle-related deaths in United States involved drugs other than alcohol.
A survey carried out by NHTSA also found that 22 percent of drivers sampled tested positive for either illegal drugs, or prescription or over the counter medicine.
Ford will incorporate the new suit into its Driving Skills for Life programme across Europe and the United States.