DUI accidents cause thousands of deaths in the United States every year. In order to prevent these fatalities from occurring at a frequent rate, many states throughout the nation are making it mandatory for individuals convicted of a DUI to have ignition interlock devices (IID) installed in their vehicles, even if it is their first offense.
According to a study conducted by the University of Pennsylvania, researchers discovered that mandatory in-car breathalyzers saved around 915 lives between 2007 and 2013. The research consisted of examining NHTSA data regarding alcohol-related crash deaths in comparison to states with and without mandatory IID laws. In conclusion, states with mandatory IID laws saved the life of one person in every 125,000.
The use of these devices has grown drastically. In 2006, around 100,000 DUI drivers were using IID. Then in 2010, that number increased to 300,000. However, only 30% of drivers convicted of a DUI have to use these devices.
Ignition Interlock Devices in Rhode Island
In Rhode Island, having an IID installed in your vehicle is an option available to not just first-time offenders but also to those who have had second and/or third convictions for DUI. Ignition Interlock Devices are not mandatory for first-time offenders with a BAC under .15%. Although not mandatory, an Ignition Interlock Device can significantly reduce the amount of time a person is without their license.
While not mandatory for RI DUI offenses whose BAC is under .15%, IID are mandatory for first-time DUI offenders whose BAC is above .15%. Further, Ignition Interlock Devices are also mandatory for those who were arrested for their second or third DUI and for those who have refused a breathalyzer test a second or third time.
While an IID seems like another form of punishment, having this device installed in your vehicle can enable your attorney to pursue a reduced license suspension and/or a hardship license, allowing you to operate your vehicle for the limited purpose of commuting to work or school.
If you have been arrested and charged with a DUI in Rhode Island, schedule a free consultation with The Law Office of Thomas C. Thomasian today.