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Simulated drunkenness

Special gear replicates intoxication

Special gear restricts movement and shows how alcohol affects skills

FORDSpecial gear restricts movement and shows how alcohol affects skillsFORD

An experimental outfit that mimics the impaired vision, coordination, and balance experienced by people who get behind the wheel after having too much to drink has been designed by Ford Motor Company in partnership with scientists from the Meyer-Hentschel Institute in Germany, a company that specializes in research on the effects of impaired mobility. The gear consists of tunnel-vision goggles to reduce the visual field, headphones, and weights on the wrists and ankles, in addition to joint-limiters that attach to the elbows, neck, and knees. The outfit hampers the user’s ability to accomplish simple tasks like walking a straight line and illustrates how alcohol impacts more complex activities, like driving. The “drunk driving suit,” as it has been dubbed, lets sober people safely experience how alcohol impairs their skills. Ford had earlier produced a suit for seniors and another for pregnant women to help the automaker better understand the needs of these drivers.