Federal lawmakers announced that they plan to introduce new legislation that would strengthen ignition interlock requirements throughout the U.S. Representative Nita Lowey of New York plans to present the law that would require all convicted drunk drivers to install an ignition interlock device for at least six months, reports Forbes.
The federal law would effectively require states to adopt and enforce the ignition interlock requirement. If a state fails to comply by adopting such a law by October 1, 2014, the state would see a reduction in federal funding.
Ignition interlock devices have proven effective in stopping incidents of drunken driving. It has been shown that drunk driving is rarely an isolated crime; in fact, studies show that an average driver who has been arrested for a DUI has likely driven drunk 87 times for every one DUI arrest. By installing an ignition interlock device into a car, potential drunk drivers will be unable to start their vehicles if they have alcohol on their breath.
Washington Ignition Interlock Laws
Almost half of the states in the U.S. already have ignition interlock laws including the State of Washington. In some states, drunk driving arrests and deaths related to drunk driving have dramatically declined because of the ignition interlock requirement.
Similar to the proposed federal law, Washington ignition interlock laws require that someone convicted of drunk driving install an ignition interlock device into his or her car for at least six months. The requirement applies to even first-time DUI offenders.
Ignition interlock devices are very burdensome as one has to blow into the device before starting the car and also periodically after a car has successfully started. Ignition interlock devices are also very expensive to maintain. Additionally, you should know that an ignition interlock device can impact your job -- especially if your livelihood depends upon driving a vehicle.
To learn more about ignition interlock requirements and other penalties related to dunk driving, contact a Seattle DUI attorney at Wolff Criminal Defense by calling 425-284-2000.