February 28, 2013 /24-7PressRelease/
-- Many states require the use of ignition interlock devices on all vehicles operated by people convicted of certain drunk driving offenses. Several of these states only require them for drivers who are convicted of more than one DUI or high blood alcohol concentration DUIs. Some say that this needs to change so people are protected from dangerous car accidents
involving repeat drunk drivers.
What is an ignition interlock device?
An ignition interlock device is installed on all vehicles a driver operates. The driver must blow into the device, and if too much alcohol is detected on the driver's breath, the vehicle will become inoperable. This process is done every time the vehicle is started and while the vehicle is moving.
Recently, the National Transportation Safety Board, or NTSB, encouraged every state to require ignition interlock devices for all drivers convicted of DUIs, including first-time offenders. Proponents of the change say that if the states adopt this policy, many lives could be saved. Right now, only 17 states require ignition interlock devices for all drivers convicted of DUIs.
South Carolina is one of the states that does not require ignition interlock devices for all drivers convicted of DUIs; in South Carolina only people convicted of multiple DUIs are required to use an ignition interlock device.
Ignition interlock devices save lives
About one-third of traffic deaths every year are alcohol-related, and this figure has remained relatively the same since at least 1995. Ignition interlock devices prevent these deaths by reducing recidivism of drunk driving. Drunk driving deaths are needless, unnecessary and easily preventable.
The use of ignition interlock devices is one way that state's can prevent DUI offenders from driving drunk in the future. There is other technology, however, that could potentially come on the market that uses infrared technology to test a driver's BAC. The NTSB encouraged the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to enhance its research on this technology because it has the potential to save even more lives. This technology could be placed in all vehicles, not just those of people convicted of drunk driving.
A NTSB study showed that some of the most serious types of accidents, wrong-way accidents, are more often than not caused by drunk drivers. They often occur in the fast lane of the highway, on weekends and at night.
Some opposition to NTSB's recommendations
Some in the beverage industry oppose the NTSB's recommendations and say that first-time drunk drivers who do not have very high BAC levels should not have to have ignition interlock devices installed in their vehicles. Others believe that people should be held responsible for their behavior even if they only did it one time, as it only takes one time to take an innocent person's life away.
People who are injured by drunk drivers have legal remedies to recover for their injuries. It is against the law to drink and drive, and people who are injured by these negligent drivers should be able to recover for their medical bills and pain and suffering. A personal injury attorney can help these people get the remedies they deserve.
Article provided by Christian & Davis, LLC
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