Louisiana law enforcement officers made over 8,700 DWI arrests in the year 2008. When you take into consideration that there were over 400 alcohol related automobile deaths the same year, it is no secret that the state of Louisiana is embroiled in a battle against inebriated driving. The state is not alone, indeed every state in the U.S. is struggling with the topic.
Alcohol-impaired driving takes an enormous toll in the United States, killing approximately one person every 40 minutes. Additionally, nearly 13,000 people were killed in alcohol-impaired-driving crashes in 2007 (NHTSA 2008a). This number has remained remarkably stable for almost two decades after alcohol-involved fatalities declined significantly in the 1980s and early-to-mid 1990s.
With so many lives at stake and outrage from organizations like MADD and other advocates for safer highways, Louisiana state legislature and law enforcement agencies have begun a crackdown on DWI in the state. From the laws that are being proposed by Louisiana legislature to the method in which the law enforcement officials and judges enforce them, it is clear that DWI is considered to be one of the most dangerous, serious crimes one can commit.
In an effort to curtail repeat DWI offenders, Louisiana has enacted new Ignition Interlock law statutes on its books. These laws dictate that for the DWI offenses supon first or second conviction, or entry of a plea of guilty or no contest, the offender’s vehicle must be equipped with a functioning ignition interlock device to be issued a restricted license.
For first time DWI offenders who are considered to have a “high limit” BAC (blood alcohol content) of .20 or more, a mandatory license suspension of at least 2 years is required. But a restricted license may be granted during the entire period of suspension with installation of an ignition interlock. Restricted licenses usually restrict drivers from operating motor vehicles during off-hours or for tasks other then traveling to and from work, school, or other activity deemed important by the courts. While each case is different, the general guidelines laid out for the courts by the legislature are usually followed.
Louisiana hopes that the continued vigilant enforcement of these statutes will help reduce DWIs in the state. The latest studies have also found that the use of Ignition Interlock Devices helps recidivism among DUI offenders. Research shows that ignition interlocks, while installed on an offender’s vehicle, reduce recidivism among both first-time and repeat DWI offenders. More than 10 evaluations of ignition interlock programs have reported reductions in recidivism ranging from 50 to 90 percent, with an average reduction of 64 percent while the interlock is installed on the vehicle
Contact Smart Start To Get Started!
For more information on Ignition Interlock Devices in Louisiana, contact Smart Start today. Our installation technicians deal exclusively with Ignition Interlock Devices in your area and we have experience with the proper installation, monitoring, and removal of Ignition Interlock Devices. Whether you are installing an IID at one of our Louisiana locations in response to a Louisiana court order, a DMV requirement, or some other reason, Smart start of Louisiana can help! Call us today at 800-880-3394 or fill out our online consultation form.