31 March 2014

Kenya: Rongo Students Invent an Anti-Drunk Driving Gadget

Rongo University College students have invented a new multipurpose gadget that might replace the breathalyser and speed governors.

Education Secretary Jacob Kaimenyi was among those attracted by the gadget known as Electronic Revenue Collection and Immobilisation System, which was on display at the universities exhibition in Eldoret.

The gadget, which is fitted on cars, is able to detect drunken drivers and immobilise their cars. It can also immobilise speeding cars, those with loud music and can be used to help in collecting revenue from operators.

"The gadget is effective and can be used to resolve many of the challenges we are facing in the transport sector," said Rongo University College student Percy Lemutekei. Lemutekei is among those behind the invention that has been tested in the region.

It operates through a centralised system that can control all cars and motorcycles registred through an electronic system. "It's a better system because instead of removing drivers from the cars to be tested using the breathalyser, the car just gets immobilised and the system sends a text to the central unit reporting the driver and the car registration number," Lemutekei said.

He said the gadget also detects drivers who use mobile phones while driving. Via sms, it reports such drivers to the central control system for action by authorities.

Lemutekei said Kenya should adopt electronic systems instead of using manual systems that can be tampered with. The system can sell at Sh3,500 per unit but its still in its crude form.

The university management is looking for funds to improve the system and make it available in the market. Once improved, it will cost about Sh5,000 per unit.

Lemutekei said they will work with the county and national governments to look into how the system can be developed. "What we want is to see such inventions being developed until we see them in the markets. That will be the success of our university education," Kaimenyi said when he visited the Rongo University College stand.

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