Governor Brian Sandoval Signs SB 259
CARSON CITY, NEVADA (June 13, 2017) — Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval has signed a lifesaving bill that will prevent the tragedies caused by repeat drunk driving. Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) thanks Governor Sandoval and the Legislature for passing SB 259, which makes Nevada the 30th state to require ignition interlocks after a drunk driving offense.
The law will take effect by Oct. 1, 2018.
“The new law will save lives by stopping first offenders from becoming repeat offenders,” said Debbie Zelinski, Program Coordinator for MADD’s Northern Nevada Affiliate. “MADD was proud to work with our elected officials and partners toward our shared goal of eliminating the violent and 100 percent preventable crime of drunk driving.”
SB 259 requires anyone arrested with a .08 blood alcohol concentration (BAC) and above to use an interlock for 90 days after an arrest in order to drive. Upon conviction, a judge must order an ignition interlock for at least six months unless the judge determines this would not serve the interests of justice. Offenders who installed an interlock pre-conviction would receive day-for-day credit for any time ordered on an interlock by a judge upon conviction. In addition, any offender who refuses a BAC test would be required to install an ignition interlock after an arrest if he or she wants to drive during the one-year administrative license revocation period.
Currently, Nevada requires ignition interlocks for first offenders with a BAC .18 or greater for a period of at least one year, and judges have the option of ordering first-time offenders with a BAC of .08 to .17 for three to six months.
MADD believes all drunk driving offenders should use an ignition interlock for at least six months before regaining unrestricted driving privileges. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), ignition interlocks stop repeat drunk driving offenses by 67 percent compared to license suspension alone. Recent Studies by the University of Pennsylvania and Johns Hopkins University have concluded that all-offender ignition interlock laws reduce drunk driving fatalities by 7 percent and 15 percent, respectively.
Nevada is the second state this month to become an all-offender state, meaning anyone who seeks driving privileges after a drunk driving offense must use an ignition interlock. On June 8, Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin signed an all-offender ignition interlock bill into law, making Oklahoma the 29th state with a law similar to SB 259.
“MADD is pleased to add Nevada to the growing list of states that recognize this common sense approach to keeping drunk drivers off the road,” said MADD National President Colleen Sheehey-Church. “We are up to 30 states and Washington, D.C., and we won’t stop until we get to all 50 states. MADD calls on states like Massachusetts, Florida, Michigan, New Jersey and Wisconsin to pass this lifesaving law.”
About Mothers Against Drunk Driving
Founded in 1980 by a mother whose daughter was killed by a drunk driver, Mothers Against Drunk Driving® (MADD) is the nation’s largest nonprofit working to end drunk driving, help fight drugged driving, support the victims of these violent crimes and prevent underage drinking. MADD has helped to save more than 350,000 lives, reduce drunk driving deaths by more than 50 percent and promote designating a non-drinking driver. MADD’s Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving® calls for law enforcement support, ignition interlocks for all offenders and advanced vehicle technology. MADD has provided supportive services to nearly one million drunk and drugged driving victims and survivors at no charge through local victim advocates and the 24-Hour Victim Help Line 1-877-MADD-HELP. Visit www.madd.org or call 1-877-ASK-MADD.
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