Ignition Interlock Systems Streamline DUI Efforts
In 1996, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, nearly 1.5 million DUI arrests were made. Unfortunately only a very small percentage of drunk drivers on the road at any one time will be arrested or stopped. That means millions of people driving under the influence are getting away with DUI. Many of these drivers are repeat offenders. If an ignition interlock system were installed in their cars after the first offense, they would not be getting away with driving drunk again. In fact, the majority of DUI offenders will get behind the wheel again even after being arrested and serving their sentence. But many of these repeat DUI offenders will never be caught by police.
So what will ignition interlock systems do to help this problem? Well from the research, it is clear that ignition interlock devices are nearly impossible to be tampered with. That means all DUI offenders who have an ignition interlock in their vehicle will not be able to get behind the wheel if they have been drinking.
Despite concerted efforts by police to catch DUI offenders, most of them will not be caught. Law enforcement officers on the road and DUI checkpoints can only do so much to curtail drunk drivers and repeat or habitual offenders. Research proves that DUI offenders will likely drink and drive again. One way to prevent recidivism is to install an ignition interlock system in their cars after the first offense. States all over the country are beginning to require that first time offenders have an ignition interlock device. In fact, there is talk of having ignition interlock devices as a standard in EVERY car, regardless of a persons DUI history.
Remember, if a DUI offender has a suspended license, that does not prevent him or her from driving. It also will not stop a convicted DUI offender from drinking and driving. But if an ignition interlock system is installed in the driver’s car in the first place, he will be able to drive legally, and it is nearly impossible for him to drive drunk. It’s simple – if the driver is drunk, it will register on the ignition interlock device and the car will not start.
Enforcing DUI checkpoints and finding and catching DUI offenders is not a simple task. In fact, it’s a losing battle. There are millions of drivers on the road who will drink and drive and never be caught. Convicted DUI offenders should not have this opportunity. Ignition interlock devices can prevent repeat behavior.