In June 2010, an initial meeting with representatives for the MHF, the Swedish National Police Board, the Swedish Transport Administration, the Swedish Transport Agency, the Swedish Customs, and the Swedish Coast Guard was held. This meeting was based partly on an application that the MHF had handed in to the Swedish Transport Administration and its fund for road safety “Skyltfonden” as regards a project aiming at constructing and developing an Alco gate system that can be used as a screening instrument, and partly on a government bill concerning traffic sobriety inspections in ports (2009/10:171).
The meeting discussed the possibility to introduce alco gates (automatic sobriety checkpoints) for voluntary use at campsites etc. or as an instrument for the police and other authorities. The MHF also presented a possible design of such a passage system. An important question discussed at the meeting was the legal conditions for the use of such equipment. The discussion resulted in the police unit at the Swedish National Police Board requesting an investigation of these issues from their legal department. In their memorandum, which came in April 2011, the legal department did not identify any legal obstacles for stopping vehicles and checking the sobriety of the drivers using this equipment.
Then the MHF conducted the first project ”Alco gates – a field trial with IR-based equipment for screening tests for alcohol in ports” in Gothenburg harbour during 17 weeks 2013 with the purpose of testing automatic sobriety checkpoints and evaluating an IR‐based passage system for automatic sobriety checkpoints. The system, which is non‐touch and used without a mouthpiece, is patented by Servotek AB, and works with the necessary speed and accuracy. A management centre, located 200 km away from Gothenburg, was in place in order to give remote support to drivers and to alert police in the case of drunk driving.
The operating system of the automatic sobriety checkpoint can be divided into a local part and a central part. The local part runs, for instance, the positioning sensors, the alcohol measurement, the barrier, the traffic lights, the instructions, the surveillance cameras, and a data server for image management. The central part of the operating system is placed in the management centre, and runs the surveillance and manoeuvring of the facility as well as the alarm and communication systems. Among other things, it contains a communication system for communication with the drivers, different screens showing the exit, two servers for the documentation of the measurement of alcohol, a data server for image management for the purpose of collecting evidence, and data simulation for the help messages. The automatic sobriety checkpoint is programmed to give instructions in twelve different languages.
During the year 2014 field trials was continued and moved to one of the ports of Stockholm. In this harbour a larger facility with six control files was built. The same management centre was used as in Gothenburg. For three months 12 469 drivers was checked, of which 87 (one of the 143 or 0.70%) was intoxicated over 0.2 ‰.
During the year 2015, the control operations in Stockholm have been maintained in continued operation. The total number of drivers checked during the year 2015: 38266 Link to a short film from Stockholm harbour (“Frihamnen”) about Alco Gates: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RYlCf2BBqFY