Several Georgia hospitals refuse blood tests for conscious DUI suspects unless the suspect consents to the test. In Georgia, as in California and most states, if police get a search warrant they can take blood from a DUI suspect by force against their will. What the police cannot do–as they are learning in Cobb, Douglas, Paulding and Cherokee Counties–is force a hospital to do the work. Now that several Georgia hospitals refuse blood tests even if the police have a warrant, it will fall to law enforcement to employ its own staff of phlebotomists to perform these forced blood draws.
An 0INK Vanity Plate was the central issue last Thursday before the Indiana Supreme Court. Greenfield police officer Rodney Vawter, represented in court by the American Civil Liberties Union, challenged the decision by the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles to revoke his 0INK Vanity Plate after three years of use. Officer Vawter said the 0INK Vanity Plate was a tongue-in-cheek reference to his job, but the BMV said it was offensive.
A DUI bicycle arrest this week in Pennsylvania highlights the risk of riding a bicycle after consuming alcohol. Herman Ray Milke was arrested yesterday on charges stemming from a July 13 incident where he crashed his bicycle. Police waited for the results of his blood alcohol test before arresting him. State DUI laws usually prohibit riding a bicycle while intoxicated, either by including bicycles in the definition of “vehicle” for DUI purposes, or–as California’s Vehicle Code section 21200.5 does–by creating a special DUI bicycle arrest statute. In California, the penalties for cycling under the influence are much less severe than for the corresponding DUI case, but a rider under 21 may have their license suspended. If you or anyone you know suffer a DUI bicycle arrest, call us and we’ll do our best to help you.
Apple’s driverless car project, code-named Titan, has long been a rumor in Silicon Valley. Last week The Guardian reported that documents confirmed the project’s existence. In May, engineers from Apple’s secretive Special Project group met with representatives of GoMentum Station, a 2,100-acre former naval base near San Francisco that is being turned into a high-security testing ground for autonomous vehicles. The Guardian obtained correspondence through a public records act request in which Apple engineer Frank Fearon wrote: “We would … like to get an understanding of timing and availability for the space, and how we would need to coordinate around other parties who would be using [it].” Though many companies are developing autonomous vehicle technology, it is widely believed that Apple’s driverless car project has the potential to lead the industry as the Cupertino company has done with mp3 players, cellular phones and tablets.
There’s an interesting piece in The Economist’s Science & Technology section predicting a life where autonomous cars rule the roads. Most of the predictions have been made before, but there are some new statistical projections, including the reduction of urban vehicles by 90% when car-making moves from selling to individual owners to selling to fleets.
A new report in Connecticut indicates a significant reduction in crashes causing injury or death in which a 16- or 17-year-old was driving. The report credits the state’s graduated driver licensing program as a principal reason for the decline. Since 2004, there has been an 84 percent decrease in fatalities for 16- and 17-year-old drivers and their passengers and a 64 percent decrease since 2008. Despite the success of the graduated license program, DMV Commissioner Andres Ayala said statistics show more young people are choosing to skip the rules associated with a graduated driver’s license and wait until they turn 18.