As we see in our day-to-day lives, drunk driving is still a problem that affects people throughout the entire nation. There have been numerous attempts to curb this tragic tendency with stricter license suspension laws, yet there still remains the gray area of drunk driving with a suspended license.
This is where ignition interlock devices come into play, to fill up this gray area and eliminate the combination of drinking and driving.
In a recent infographic posted by MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving), this fact of ignition interlock devices succeeding where license suspensions fail is perfectly exemplified. With just a mere license suspension, there are zero obstacles a person must overcome to drink and get behind the wheel again.
MADD: License suspensions don’t prevent repeat offenses
As reported within the infographic, nearly 50-75% of convicted drunk drivers still drive on their suspended licenses, explaining the fact that one-third of first offenders repeat this dangerous offense.
In recent years, there have been large numbers reported of people being caught drunk driving on a suspended license. In 2009, California reported 43,000 people were caught drunk driving on suspended licenses. More recently, 17,000 were caught in Florida in 2012 and 2,000 in Wisconsin for all of 2014. The bottom line is, license suspensions do not eliminate the habit of drunk driving.
Ignition interlock devices are the most effective solution
On the other hand, with the implementation of an ignition interlock device, two important barriers are established to prevent drivers from drunk driving on a suspended license. The first obstacle is that before the car even starts a person must submit a breath test to see how much alcohol is within their system. If alcohol is actually detected and they fail multiple tests in a row, their car will enter into a lockout mode and the potential drunk driver will not be able to operate their car until it is taken out of lockout by the ignition interlock provider.
The second obstacle is the random retest, which requires the driver to resubmit random breath test while operating their car. This prevents drivers from passing their initial start-up test and drinking as they operate their vehicle. If a person fails or misses a retest multiple times, their car will enter into a lockout mode.
Their car will not shut off but it will beep and flash its lights, drawing attention to it and prompting the driver to get off the road. If no alcohol is detected for all of the breath samples the driver takes, the driver will be able to reach their destination in a safe and sober manner.
In this day and age of technology and information, we must look towards the facts to update our methods of preventing drunk driving. Antiquated license suspension laws are just not cutting it, and we must strive to provide better protection on the roads for our friends and family. Ignition interlocks are a proven method of providing this protection while allowing those who made the mistake of drunk driving to still live their everyday lives.
To see the infographic mentioned in this article, and to see how to demand ignition interlock laws in your area, please visit MADD’s website.
If you are interested in obtaining an ignition interlock device or mandated to have one by a court order, learn more about why you should choose Intoxalock as your ignition interlock provider.