Thursday, December 2, 2010

Ignition interlock: it's all the rage

I just received something called the "Interlock Focus" from Intoxalock in the mail this morning. The advertisement/newsletter was touting the number of states that enacted new laws requiring ignition interlock devices on the cars of those accused of and convicted of driving while intoxicated.

According to Intoxalock, in 2009 there were 74 ignition interlock bills introduced throughout the United States and 11 were approved. In 2010 there were 54 bills introduced with 15 enacted into law. Vermont became the 48th state to join the "interlock movement."

Minnesota passed a new ignition interlock bill that will require interlock devices for motorists upon a second DWI conviction. The new law will also require more first-time offenders to install the devices in order to drive legally.

Tennessee's new law will require any motorist convicted of drunk driving with an alcohol concentration of .16 or higher to install the device in their car.

The state of Louisiana has made it a criminal offense to tamper with an interlock device and will require that "interlock messaging" be placed on the driver's licenses of motorists convicted of driving while intoxicated.

Of course I would expect the maker of the Intoxalock to cheer the implementation of new legislation requiring more drivers to have these devices installed on their cars -- after all, with installation fees and monthly maintenance fees of around $75, drunk driving is quite the money-making operation.

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