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Feds Push for Stronger Drunk Driving Laws

on 08/22/2012

Texas drivers, who have prior drunk driving convictions on their records or have license suspensions on their history, are required to get an ignition interlock device installed in their vehicle to prevent any further incidents of intoxicated driving.  However, many fatal alcohol-related car accidents in Texas every year are caused by drivers who already had a DUI, but were not required to have an ignition interlock device installed in their vehicle.  

According to statistics more than 40% of all people involved in alcohol-related car accidents are repeat offenders.  It is these offenders that these laws would target.

The federal administration wants to reduce the number of such accidents.  The administration is dangling millions of dollars in highway safety funds for states that will pass laws requiring all DUI offenders to install ignition interlock devices.

This is the kind of law that any Houston car accident attorney would like to see.  The law that the federal administration wants states to enact would require an ignition interlock device to be installed in all vehicles of all persons convicted of DUI offenses.  Even if you have been convicted of a DUI for the very first time, you would be required to have the device installed in your car. 

The device acts like a breathalyzer to detect the amount of alcohol on your breath.  If the alcohol content is above a specific limit, then the device shuts the ignition down, preventing you from driving.

Any attempt to have ignition interlock devices mandated even for first-time DUI offenders in Texas is likely to be strongly opposed by vested interests, especially the beverage industry.  That's why the federal administration is dangling the potential of up to $20 million in highway safety funds for states that implement these laws. 

Tags: Texas, Drunk Driving

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