The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says it has taken the first step towards making technology, which detects drunk drivers, standard in new cars.

The NHTSA estimates that fatalities, injuries, and property damage from alcohol-impaired driving costs society $280 billion in lost wages, lost quality of life, medical costs, and more.

The agency said the Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking it has announced helps lay the groundwork for potential alcohol-impairment detection technology standards in all new passenger vehicles when the technology is mature.

“It is tragic that drunk driving crashes are one of the leading causes of roadway fatalities in this country and far too many lives are lost,” said Polly Trottenberg, the US Department of Transportation’s Deputy Secretary.

“The Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking we are announcing is the first step toward a new safety standard requiring alcohol-impaired-driving prevention technology in new passenger vehicles. I want to applaud the NHTSA team, elected officials and advocates who helped get us to today and will continue to help lay the groundwork on this issue.”

This ANPRM will help gather information about the state of technology to detect impaired driving, about how to deploy technology safely and effectively, and will provide other information to further the agency’s work as the research and technology advances to the level to develop a standard to prevent driver impairment.