Ford Europe has demonstrated a new ‘suit’ which it says gives drivers the opportunity to experience life behind the wheel while under the influence of illicit drugs.
The suit features goggles that simulate tunnel vision, weights for the limbs to make walking difficult and slow reaction times along with tremor simulators for the hands.
There’s also a set of headphones that play random and distracting sounds while the user is wearing the suit.
Combined, the suit’s individual features are designed to give drivers a sense of the effects of drugs on the body, while operating a vehicle in a controlled environment.
While the suit might not look glamourous, it’s hoped demonstrations for young drivers under Ford’s Driving Skills For Life program will deter them from drug-driving when they obtain a licence.
A video from Ford (bottom of page) shows a professional driver using the suit who struggles to negotiate a slalom course with witch’s hats, while a young female driver tries but fails to catch rubber balls being passed to her.
“Driving after taking illegal drugs can have potentially fatal consequences for the driver, their passengers, and other road users,” Ford Driving Skills For Life’s Jim Graham said.
“We have already seen first-hand the eye-opening effect that our Drink Driving Suit has had on those who wear it behind the wheel, and are confident that our new Drug Driving Suit will have a similar impact.”
In Australia, Victoria’s Transport Accident Commission (TAC) says around 37 percent of all drivers killed in the past five years had drugs in their system.