MADD Testifies in Favor of Requiring Interlocks for All Drunk Driving Offenders in the District of Columbia

Laws are proved to reduce repeat drunk driving offenses by two-thirds


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Nick Ellinger, MADD


Washington, DC – Today, JT Griffin, MADD’s Senior Vice President of Public Policy, testified in favor of B19-673, which supports ignition interlocks for all drunk driving offenders.  He also pushed for additional provisions in the bill that would clarify that anyone convicted of driving with an illegal BAC of .08 or greater would be required to use an ignition interlock for at least six months. 

“These devices help save lives and help offenders at the same time,” said Griffin.  “Convicted drunk drivers who have an interlock are offenders who can keep their job, keep going to school, and at the same time keep the public safe.”

Numerous studies have established the effectiveness of all offender ignition interlock laws.  For example, the Centers for Disease Control recommends ignition interlock laws because it found that interlocks reduce repeat offenses while on offenders’ vehicles.  The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) found likewise in its studies of Washington State’s ignition interlock law.

There are almost a quarter of a million ignition interlock devices in use today across the United States.

"Ignition interlock laws are showing great progress in the states, with Oregon and Arizona seeing a 50 percent + decline in DUI fatalities soon after all-offender interlock laws were passed," said Griffin. "Sixteen states, including Virginia, now require ignition interlocks for all offenders and the District should follow suit."

Support for ignition interlock laws is one of three steps in MADD’s Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving, along with supporting law enforcement and bolstering research into advanced technology that will stop all drunk driving.

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