Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
h a l f b a k e r y
A riddle wrapped in a mystery inside a rich, flaky crust

idea: add, search, annotate, link, view, overview, recent, by name, random

meta: news, help, about, links, report a problem

account: browse anonymously, or get an account and write.

user:
pass:
register,


                                 

Drunk driving mass limit

limit the mass of a vehicle that someone convicted of drunk driving can operate
  (+9, -1)(+9, -1)
(+9, -1)
  [vote for,
against]

Drunk drivers pose a major danger to people and property that I hadn't really considered much until I recently witnessed a house get hit TWICE by drunk drivers. While we do put stiff penalties on drunk drivers, by increasing their insurance premiums, revoking their commercial driving licenses, requiring breathalyzer ignition locks, and other measures, I feel that something more fundamental could be added to better protect society from this danger: Limit repeat drunk drivers to using vehicles of smaller mass.

Damage produced by a collision is dependent on the force applied to the objects involved: Force equals mass times acceleration. While we could put speed governors on the engines of drunk drivers, those devices are not readily visible, and can be mechanically disabled, as can breathalyzer ignition locks, which often are disabled by repeat drunk drivers.

By limiting the mass of the vehicle involved in an accident, we could reduce the damage caused by the accident. While this might not avoid fatalities in the event of a drunk driver, it might reduce the number of possible fatalities, the chance of fatalities, and the value of property damage involved.

Take the house I saw get hit twice, for example.

The first time, the vehicle was a mid-sized truck, which went over the curb, through a chain link fence, and up to the hood through two rooms with an adjoining wall. This damage was partly due to the vehicle's clearance, which allowed it to more easily hop the curb, but also due to the mass of the truck, which despite not going much above the speed limit, had a load in the bed, extending it's required braking time, and the amount of mass needed to stop the force of the impact. An economy car might not have pierced through the wall as much. A motor scooter might not have passed through the fence.

The second time, the vehicle was a super-duty truck, with dual rear tires and no load in the trunk. This vehicle passed through two parked vehicles, and came to rest on the recently repaired fence. Had this been an economy vehicle, it might not have passed through either parked vehicle.

So... after one drunk driving offense, the vehicle operator is limited to using an economy sized car or motorcycle. Upon a second offense, they can only use a motor scooter.

These rules may seem harsh, and restrictive, but let us remind ourselves, that once someone has proven themselves capable of being a danger to society, we should restrict some of their freedoms until it can be determined that they are no longer a danger to society. Such limits might also give a repeat drunk driver pause for consideration: less mass in the vehicle means more force to the operator in the event of an impact. While I wouldn't want anyone to be a danger to themselves, if we have to decide, we normally protect society more than a potential danger to society.

ye_river_xiv, May 10 2023

Don't let the small size of a motorcycle fool you https://www.google....-head-on-crash/amp/
[21 Quest, May 12 2023]

[link]






       I'm all about freedom and even I endorse this idea. They can still get around, which is the important thing. For three or more offenses maybe limit their vehicle's speed as well. Not to something punitively slow, that 's not the point.
Voice, May 11 2023
  

       //These rules may seem harsh, and restrictive, but let us remind ourselves, that once someone has proven themselves capable of being a danger to society, we should restrict some of their freedoms until it can be determined that they are no longer a danger to society.//   

       ...   

       Yes, let's apply these rules to politicians, corporations, and all tax free 'entities'.   

       Long time, no see, [ye].   

       My favourite part of this rule is that someone who has recklessly endangered, say, a cyclist, may find that they now have to become a cyclist in order to get to work.   

       [+]
pertinax, May 11 2023
  

       Here I have an old style license which as well as allowing a motorbike (A), car (B) and light van (b1) also allows me to drive a small truck (C1), minibus (D1), with either towing a four wheel trailer. I can't drive a large truck or an articulated lorry or a full sized bus without taking a further HGV or PSV test which I have not (and don't need to) do.   

       However the rules have tightened significantly since I passed my driving test about 100 years ago, and now if you pass a driving test in a car you can basically drive a car. If you want to drive a truck you have to pass a HGV test which is much more stringent. And similarly your entitlement to drive a truck can be withdrawn, and you can be downgraded back to the "standard" which is B/B1 I think.
pocmloc, May 11 2023
  

       [ye_river_xiv] Where have you been? Welcome back. As regards the idea, it's daft enough to be approved by me, (3x points awarded) but I would also require the miscreants to have their stomach size reduced by some sort of stapling process to help reduce their capacity to ingest alcohol.
xenzag, May 11 2023
  

       Good solution. [+]   

       In coastal North Carolina those tiny, buzzy scooters were called DUI (Dewey) bikes, and were the only motorized transportation allowed for individuals so convicted. They might reach 30 mph flat out, downhill with favorable tailwinds.   

       Long time no sea, [ye].
whatrock, May 11 2023
  

       This is brilliant, they can still get to work, they just can't be driving as potentially deadly a machine. [+]
doctorremulac3, May 11 2023
  

       Already baked, for all practical purposes, on our paved portion of the TransCanada Trail, between the hours of snowgone (Aprilish) and snowfall (Octoberish).   

       While drunk drivers do now drive these smaller Dewey vehicles (per [whatrock]'s comment), they can now hit smaller, unprotected targets (children, pets, seniors, wildlife). Less menace on the road, where the impaired hit other big vehicles, houses, the occasional person, before hitting the ditch, and more menace on the walking/biking trails, where victims/targets have less protection.   

       Of course, they also monkey with the gearing/remove governors to transform 30km/h mobi-devices into 65km/h crotchrockets, zooming down walking paths.   

       It was just made worse by the installation of a destination LCBO in our town.
Sgt Teacup, May 11 2023
  

       //Here I have an old style license which as well as allowing a motorbike (A), car (B) and light van (b1) also allows me to drive a small truck (C1), minibus (D1), with either towing a four wheel trailer...//   

       Grandfathering things in produces some strange outcomes in the real world. If I wanted to borrow my friend's car trailer to move a (hopefully temporarily) imobile car from A to B, can I do that? No, I passed my driving test after '97, so I'd need a car + trailer test (Cat B + some other letter). What about my friend who's a truck driver? He's Cat C+E rated with all the chip card tachs etc. to prove it, he's legally allowed to hurtle around the country in a 44 tonne articulated truck, can he tow a car? No. So keeping everything legal, the only option is my mum, who respectfully, is past her fairly modest driving peak.
bs0u0155, May 11 2023
  

       You've never seen what a motorcycle can do to a car. Smaller mass, sure, but also a much smaller point of contact so it's more impactful than its diminutive size would have you believe.
21 Quest, May 12 2023
  

       OTOH, the rider of that motorbike is unlikely to do it twice.
pertinax, May 12 2023
  

       It DOES tend to be a self resolving problem.
21 Quest, May 12 2023
  

       So, in general we will assume anyone on a scooter is drunk out of their mind, having been barred from car driving but not drinking. "Look at all the scooters at Red's Roadhouse. Must have been a bunch of accidents last night."
minoradjustments, May 16 2023
  

       I've been out.   

       I did not get the memo that the HB was back online.
ye_river_xiv, May 22 2023
  

       I *knew* we should have sent a pigeon; owls are too big for the holes in the firewall.
pertinax, May 22 2023
  
      
[annotate]
  


 

back: main index

business  computer  culture  fashion  food  halfbakery  home  other  product  public  science  sport  vehicle