Don't expect Google to remove apps that help users avoid DUI checkpoints -- the company says it is leaving the controversial apps on its Android Marketplace.
A source said the company only removes apps that violate its Android content policies and the apps in question do not appear to violate these policies.
Four senators, Harry Reid (D-NV), Charles E. Schumer (D-NY), Frank R. Lautenberg (D-NJ), and Tom Udall (D-NM), sent letters out to Apple, Google and Research in Motion asking them to remove apps that help people avoid DUI checkpoints, saying they are dangerous. RIM has agreed to pull the apps and Apple has yet to respond.
On its Android app policy site, the only thing that the DUI checkpoint evasion app comes close to breaking is its Illegal activities policy. Google says Android apps must Keep it legal. Don't engage in unlawful activities on this product.
The main source of concern is an app called PhantomAlert, which shows the locations of the DUI checkpoints, school zones, red light cameras and speed traps. It can also be uploaded to a user's GPS system and costs $9.99 per month. Other apps of this nature include Buzzed and Trapster.
The senators say having these kinds of apps available is dangerous. One person dies every 50 minutes in a drunk-driving accident, and more than 10,000 Americans die in drunk-driving crashes each year.
We appreciate the technology that has allowed millions of Americans to have information at their fingertips, but giving drunk drivers a free tool to evade checkpoints, putting innocent families and children at risk, is a matter of public concern. We hope that you will give our request to make these applications unavailable immediate consideration, the senators said in their letters to Google, RIM and Apple.
Apple has not responded to a request for comment.
If you didn’t use the app, and you found yourself in a bit of DUI trouble, you can get expert advice from the best San Diego DUI Lawyer.