New app claims to give drunk drivers edge over police

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by Philip Townsend, 13News Now

WVEC.com

Posted on May 6, 2014 at 5:06 AM

Updated Tuesday, May 6 at 5:18 AM

VIRGINIA BEACH -- A new smartphone application could give drunk drivers an edge over police.

The 'Oh Crap App!' tells drivers what to say to an officer when being pulled over, there's a section on basic legal rights and you can even press a button that contacts an on-call lawyer.

"It's good to know what your rights are, but I don't know if I'd be using this on the road," said driver Tom Benson.

A team of attorneys in Iowa put together the app as a way to educate drivers, but Sgt. Colin Mack with the Virginia Beach Police Department says drivers should proceed with caution.

"Some of the things on there aren't necessarily correct."

Mack focuses on DUI's in the city as a member of the department's fatal crash unit.

He says some of the information, mainly legal guidelines, are applicable only to drivers in Iowa. Many laws differ from state to state.

"Anyone who wants to educate themselves is free to do so," he said. "Just make sure you're following the code of Virginia if you're driving in this state."

A quick push of a button activates the applications voice recorder during a conversation with an officer. It also has its own blood alcohol calculator.

"I could definitely see myself using those features," said driver Daniel Hernandez.

Mack says that's another feature drivers shouldn't trust.

"You don't know what the BAC calculator is based on. A lot of people have been arrested in Virginia Beach trying to follow these calculators when they weren't necessarily accurate."

But there is one piece of information he likes. He calls it the most basic thing drivers need to know.

"It does tell you not to drink and drive, so that's good."

The application is available for both Apple and Google smartphones.

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