A secret European Union project that would allow police to remotely turn off vehicle engines could make dangerous high-speed chases and road spikes a thing of the past.
The UK’s Telegraph newspaper reports a committee of senior EU police officers has devised a strategy dubbed ‘Remote Stopping Vehicles’ designed to give them the power to halt any vehicle in the name of public safety.
“The project will work on a technological solution that can be a ‘build-in standard’ for all cars that enter the European market,” a confidential document reveals.
Under the plan, the technology would be fitted to all new cars by the end of the decade, allowing police working at a central headquarters to stop the engine of a fugitive or suspect’s car, cut the fuel supply and kill the ignition.
The project is one of the “key objectives” for the European Network of Law Enforcement Technologies, a division working to improve police cooperation throughout the EU.
The Telegraph reports Remote Stopping Vehicles has been approved by the EU’s Standing Committee on Operational Cooperation on Internal Security – the body mandated to facilitate and strengthen internal security coordination across the EU.
The secret project has attracted plenty of criticism, with opponents labelling it “draconian” and an “attack” on civil liberties.