New State Interlock Laws Enacted in 2016
Over the past year, three states and the Washington, D.C., passed all-offender ignition interlock laws. Other states added incentives or requirements that will lead to increased use of ignition interlocks. Currently, 28 states and Washington, D.C., have all-offender ignition interlock laws.
The significant changes to state laws in 2016:
Maryland, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington, D.C. enacted all-offender interlock laws, bringing the total to 28 states and the District of Columbia.
Pennsylvania enacted a law requiring devices for refusals and first-time offenders with a BAC of .10 or greater. This law goes into effect in August 2017.
California, Georgia and Ohio enacted laws incentivizing the use of interlocks: o California: Effective January 2019, interlocks will be mandatory for repeat offenders and first-time offenders in injury crashes. Other first-time offenders may choose between: 1) interlock use for six months available upon arrest with no route/time restrictions; 2) one-year license suspension upon conviction; 3) 30-day license suspension followed by 330 days on a time/route-restricted license. o Georgia: Effective July 2017, first-time offenders will have a choice upon arrest: 1) license suspension or route/time-restricted license for at least four months and DUI school; or 2) interlock for at least four months with no route/time restrictions. o Ohio : Annie’s Law, effective April 2017, will allow a first-time offender to use an interlock with unlimited driving privileges during a license suspension period. Offenders who use an interlock will have their license suspension period reduced by half, and they will have no route/time restrictions. A route/time-restricted license is still an option during their license suspension. West Virginia lawmakers defeated a measure eliminating Administrative License Revocation (ALR). West Virginia is one of 41 states and the District of Columbia with an ALR law. The use of interlocks is tied to the ALR law and available as an option post-arrest. Interlocks during ALR has contributed to the state’s 50 percent decline in drunk driving deaths. Repealing the law would have been devastating. West Virginia’s ALR law is one other states should replicate.
Mississippi and Tennessee enacted laws requiring interlock users to prove compliance while on the device before having it removed and being relicensed.
For more resources on interlocks, please visit madd.org/interlock. MADD has an action plan in place on how each state can take legislative and non-legislative steps to improve their law at http://www.madd.org/laws/law-overview/Overview-of-first-offender-interlock-laws.pdf.
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