"Despite the number of driving fatalities decreasing over the last decade, around 12,000 people in the United States continue to die every year in crashes involving a driver with alcohol in their system," the Atlantic's recent article begins.
Clearly traditional methods of DUI prevention are not as effective as they could be. The scare tactics are not quite as seductive as the allure of alcohol. But with a breathalyzer, the power returns to the drinker.
"Keith Nothacker, founder and president of personal-breathalyzer company BACtrack, is trying to put an end to the drinking and driving epidemic in America," the article continues.
"'I thought it was crazy that you could get pulled over, get arrested and go to jail for a number you couldn’t test yourself,' he says, explaining why he started the company 14 years ago. 'It’s like not having a speedometer in your car and then getting arrested for speeding.'
"Today, BACtrack devices are in more than 15,000 retail stores. They’re small enough to fit on a keychain and in a pocket, and many of them have corresponding smartphone apps."
The article goes on to explore the fact that although breathalyzers are available, and priced affordable enough for anyone to own and use one, there are still carried by less than 1% of all drivers.
Why this is still true in 2015 is a mystery. The writer of this article guesses that it might be a stigma that if you own a breathalyzer, you have a drinking problem, or the perception that a personal breathalyzer is an unnecessary expense, no matter how affordable one may be priced.
"Research from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety indicates that about 7,100 deaths would have been prevented in 2012 if all drivers with BACs of .08 percent or higher had been kept off the roads."
You just can't argue with that kind of logic.