If you’ve watched TV or listen to radio you’ve likely heard ads for organizations like Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MAAD) and the International Drunk Driving Prevention Association (IDDPA). Sometimes these ads provide heart-wrenching details about everyday people who were killed in horrific drunk driving accidents. No matter the organization, the message is always the same: drunk driving is horrible and shouldn’t be done ever.
Those ads and other efforts to curb and eliminate drunk driving are there for good reason. As many as 28 people die every day in drunk driving accidents. Think hard about that. That’s basically one person every hour every single day. To add to that, the annual cost of car crashes/accidents that are related to alcohol totals almost $60 billion.
There’s nothing more dangerous on the road than a drunk driver. Fortunately, devices like interlock ignition devices (IIDs) can be used. Don’t know what an IID is? It’s essentially a breathalyzer that a driver has to blow into before they drive. If a person’s blood-alcohol content (BAC) reading is too high, then the vehicle doesn’t start and he/she can’t drive
Ignition interlock devices from ignition interlock companies are typically set to a preset level, helping to keep intoxicated drivers off the road. Another benefit of IIDs is that they can be set up by ignition interlock companies to randomly test drivers again during their journey. This sort of random test keeps them sober and honest, since triggering a BAC reading greater than the preset will bring the vehicle to a stop.
Over time, IIDs can offer many benefits, not the least of which is saving lives:
- Keeping driving privileges: There are already about 150,000 interlock systems installed in cars in the United States, having been placed there for drivers with multiple DUI convictions. These allow those who have been cited for DWI and other offenses a chance to keep their driving status. Keeping folks like that in check is important, but IIDS allow them to maintain a semblance of everyday life if they need to get to a job or support meetings or drive their families around.
- Reduced recidivism: Ignition interlock companies can help lower recidivism (repeat offender) rates with their devices. In fact, IIDS have proven to be more effective than suspending a driver’s license. Interlocks have been associated a 70% decrease in drunk driving arrests and that extends to even after they’ve been removed from a vehicle. When a device is removed, recidivism rates lower by as much as 39% compared to driver’s who drive while impaired and have never driven with IIDs.
- Cost effective: Having an ignition interlock device installed in a vehicle does cost money. But consider how much money you’ll spend on an IID from ignition interlock device companies versus the punishments you’ll face if you drive while intoxicated. You can’t put a price on a life, so the money spent on an IID is worth it.
- Saving more lives: Make no mistake, ignition interlock devices save lives. Research has shown that states that require the use of IIDs have cut down on DWI deaths by as much as 30%.
- Predictability: Since IIDs regularly require and record breath tests, they can help predict when drivers might be at risk for recidivism. Having a log of breath and BAC tests from an IID can determine whether or not an offender’s license should be restored. IIDs can be beneficial because they serve as a reminder to those on a short leash of what might happen if they slip up. Think of it as a way to keep offenders or potential offenders in check or possibly to even scare them straight. A person’s family can have a higher degree of reassurance since they know the offender will be on good behavior with an IID in the vehicle they’re driving.
If you’re in need of an IID, please don’t hesitate to contact ignition interlock companies for help. From their ability to save lives, make roads safer, hold offenders accountable and reduce the chance of repeat offenses, there are plenty of benefits. Getting one installed in your vehicle will help make you and other people safer than getting hit with stiff penalties from a repeat offense.