Three North Carolina state senators have introduced new legislation that would expand the state’s ignition interlock laws to affect all convicted drunk drivers. Currently, only repeat offenders are mandated to install ignition interlock devices (IIDs) in their vehicles, as are drivers who refuse a chemical alcohol test and individuals convicted of driving a vehicle with a blood alcohol content level above .15 percent.
The proposed legislation is Senate Bill 619, and Senators Bill Rabon, E.S. Newton and Josh Stein have cosponsored it. The new bill would make it mandatory for all people convicted of any type of drunk driving offense to use IIDs in their cars. There are similar laws already in place in 24 states across the country, including Tennessee and Virginia.
The law has received a great deal of support from groups like Mothers Against Drunk Driving. In 2013, 371 people were killed in crashes involving alcohol use in North Carolina, which accounted for nearly a third of all traffic deaths.
According to information from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, ignition interlock devices can help to reduce repeat incidents of drunk driving by up to 67 percent, when compared to the impact of license suspensions alone. Drunk driving deaths have declined at a much quicker pace in states that have established these types of laws. At the federal level, Congress has also established an IID incentive program for states that pass such legislation, giving them grants to help fund the widespread use of the devices.
If you have been injured in a crash involving a drunk driver, speak with an experienced North Carolina car accident attorney at Lanier Law Group right away.