The Los Angeles Times reports that auto safety regulators are pushing for new equipment to protect motorists from their biggest threat: themselves. They’re aiming to keep drunk drivers off the road with the help of onboard technology that immobilizes their cars. New vehicles may soon come with systems to help prevent collisions. And engines may not start unless occupants buckle their seat belts.
It’s part of a push by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to use technology to reduce traffic fatalities. The agency said it 90 percent of crashes have an element of human error. Automakers for years resisted federal safety initiatives, originally objecting to seat belts, air bags and more recently making backup cameras standard equipment. But for now they are supporting NHTSA’s efforts.