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Compelling arguments support ignition interlock mandate

On Behalf of | Apr 4, 2016 | Fatal Motor Vehicle Accidents |

Here’s a sobering image to think about for a second: an armed missile on a busy California roadway.

Isn’t that essentially what any moving car in the state instantly becomes when a drunk driver gets behind the wheel and turns the key in its ignition?

A writer recently penning an opinion article for a California newspaper refers to vehicles driven by drunk drivers as “weapons indiscriminately aimed at our children, parents or siblings.”

Shouldn’t authorities take every conceivable measure to stop such motorists and their missile delivery systems, especially availing themselves of any deterrent that is proven and readily available?

As the above-cited writer — a former law enforcement official and current principal with the advocacy group Mothers Against Drunk Driving — notes, there is just such a tool, and he strongly recommends that its use be universally mandated following drunk driving convictions in California.

And by that he means this: all DUI convictions, even for first offenders.

Ignition interlock devices (IIDs) are currently required to be installed by all drunk driving offenders in 25 states across the country. The above columnist and other IID proponents strongly urge that California become the 26h state to enact universal IID legislation.

Because interlocks work, pure and simple. A would-be driver who has consumed alcohol simply cannot start a vehicle with an installed IID.

And that happy reality renders the risk of a drinking-related accident resulting in the serious injury or death of one or more people a flat zero.

California legislators just moved — and unanimously so — a universal ignition interlock device bill through a Senate committee, which constitutes one completed check mark in a series of hurdles that must be cleared before the bill can become a fully realized law in California.

We wish the legislation smooth sailing, for obvious reasons.


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