There is a continued effort being made by organizations and government officials to reduce the number of drunk driving accidents in North Carolina and elsewhere in the country.
Habitual offenders are a growing concern of our personal injury attorneys in Greensboro, Winston-Salem and Charlotte because drivers who drive drunk seem to do so over and over, even after being involved in a car crash.
We previously posted on our North Carolina Car Accident Lawyers Blog about a new Driver Alcohol Detection System for Safety (DADSS) which is currently in the developmental stages and is being sponsored by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Once implemented, DADSS will prevent habitual offenders from getting behind the wheel to drive under the influence. The system will automatically detect when a drivers' blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is over the legal limit of .08 and prevent them from starting the vehicle.
The Governors Highway Safety Association recently reported about the most recent effort made by Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which concluded an extensive study on ignition interlocks. The CDC Community Guide reviewed 15 studies on ignition interlocks before concluding that the system helps prevent previous DWI offenders from being re-arrested for driving under the influence. Vehicles installed with ignition interlocks decreased the chances of repeat offenders driving under the influence by approximately 67%.
The NHTSA reported in 2009 that 32% of total traffic fatalities for the year were caused by drunk drivers driving with a BAC of .08 or higher. There was an average of one drunk driving related death every 48 minutes in 2009. It was reported that drivers involved in fatal crashes with a BAC of .08 or higher were 8 times more likely to have a previous conviction for driving drunk than drivers with no alcohol detected in their system at the time of the fatal crash.
Dr. Thomas Frieden, Director of CDC, notes, "Each day, more than 30 people die because of alcohol-impaired driving. We know that interlock devices can save lives. More widespread use will reduce alcohol-related crash deaths and injuries."
NHTSA, GHSA, and Mothers Against Drunk Driving are all organizations that have joined the CDC in support of ignition interlocks. These devices allow offenders to drive when it is safe and legal to do so. No matter what your age, or what the circumstances are, motorists should never get behind the wheel while under the influence of alcohol.