A powerful new device has hit the market that promises to warn drivers of nearby emergency vehicles, including police cars, fire trucks and ambulances. The device is called “Target Blu Eye” and is being sold by the Dutch Company “Target Automotive.
The Blu Eye system works by monitoring frequencies that are used by emergency vehicles and then alerts the driver when those frequencies are nearby. It does not allow the driver to listen in on the encrypted communications, but will simply give a signal when those frequencies are nearby.
This is far more advanced and accurate than a traditional radar detector, because this device works even when the officer has their radar and other equipment turned off.
Police representatives and mainstream media sources are not pleased that this device is on the market, because it will give oppressed drivers an edge on police who depend on the element of surprise to generate their revenue.
The Sunday Times published an attack piece on the invention this week, calling it a “gadget for crooks,” and suggested that it undermines the goals of law enforcement.
David Bizley, the Royal Automobile Club’s chief engineer responded to The Sunday Times, saying that his device actually makes the roads safer.
“As it does not distinguish between a police car, ambulance or fire engine responding to an emergency or one that is simply driving under non-blue-light conditions, this particular device is sadly just as likely to be bought by a minority of motorists who wish to evade being caught behaving illegally,” Bizley said.
The Target Blu Eye system sells for about $1,600 in Europe, where the device is currently being sold. The type of frequencies that the system is trained to detect are only used by emergency vehicles in Europe. However, according to Fox News, Target Managing Director Jan Rijks said a version that will be compatible with emergency vehicles in the US is nearly ready for release, and could be released sometime in 2015.
Rijks also responded to the attacks against his invention, saying that: “We promote the safe side. Of course, people may say, ‘I want, now and then, to drive a little faster,’ but in a big city there is no licence to speed because there is always the presence of emergency vehicles, which could be ambulances or fire engines. People driving with Blu Eye are more aware of their speed and driving behaviour because you get alerts, which makes people check that they are doing everything OK.”