Acusensus, best known for its mobile phone detection cameras, is developing cameras that can detect drug and alcohol-affected drivers.

It says it plans to roll these out in Australia and overseas.

The Melbourne company is working with the Federal Office of Road Safety and Griffith University to develop AI-based technology that will measure the driver’s attentiveness, reaction time, control and determine impairment levels, all in real time.

Using driver behaviours like speeding, trajectory patterns, and lateral movements within lanes, the technology is able to send information to local police officers to enforce fines and take further action.

During development, the company told 7News it’s using a simulator that features computer-generated versions of actual roads in multiple Australian cities to learn behaviours of drivers who are sober or drunk.

Drivers are tested in a simulator under the influence of alcohol to collect data on their driving patterns.

The data is yet to be implemented into camera hardware, however the company tells iTWire it has plans to do so once the data has been properly analysed.

In a real-world deployment, the hardware can be placed anywhere at anytime but will at first be tested in a stationary trailer a few hundred metres from police patrol cars.

The software uses a four-step process: deploy, capture, automated analysis and review.

At a very high level, the software will capture images of passing vehicles through a number of cameras, infra-red flash, lensing and a filtering system, and then feed it into an AI-based software that will detect potentially drug- or alcohol-affected drivers.

The system will then review and send the images to police officers for an in-person verification to determine if officers are required to pull over and test the affected driver.

The company says the goal for this technology is to extensively reduce the number of fatalities attributed to drivers under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

A challenge that the company is currently working through is differentiating the patterns between good, bad and impaired drivers.

Acusensus was founded in 2018 and currently has offices in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, the UK and Las Vegas.

It’s responsible for camera detection programs in New South Wales, Queensland and Victoria.

The company says that since the NSW Mobile Phone Detection Camera Program was put in place, there had been a six-fold reduction in camera-detected mobile phone offences and a more than 20 per cent drop in road fatalities.

MORE: Mobile phone detection cameras: How do they work?
MORE: $555 fine for new Victorian mobile detection cameras

Jade Credentino

Jade Credentino is an automotive journalist currently based in Melbourne, Australia. Jade has had a chance to review a variety of vehicles and particularly enjoys SUVs. She enjoys traveling and going on road trips exploring Australia.

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