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Study Shows Ignition Interlock Laws Can Reduce Deaths from Drunk Driving

Posted on behalf of Stephens, Anderson & Cummings on Feb 16, 2017 in Auto Accidents

using ignition interlockAll-offender ignition interlock laws are associated with a seven percent reduction in fatal drunk driving accidents, according to research from the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health.

These laws are in place in the District of Columbia and 28 states, including Texas. They require anyone convicted of driving under the influence to have an ignition interlock installed in their car.

These devices are breathalyzers connected to a vehicle's ignition. Cars with ignition interlocks will not start until the driver breathes into the device so it can measure blood alcohol concentration (BAC). If the driver's BAC is found to be above the legal limit, the device will prevent the car from starting.  

The purpose of the Johns Hopkins study was to determine how ignition interlock laws and other traffic safety improvements affected the number of drunk driving crashes from the late 1980s to 2013. Researchers found that all-offender ignition interlock laws saved more than 1,200 lives.

The Johns Hopkins study is titled Ignition Interlock Laws: Effects on Fatal Motor Vehicle Crashes, 1982-2013. It is one of the first studies to prove that ignition interlock laws can help lower the number of drunk driving fatalities.

In March 2016, researchers from the University of Pennsylvania released a study revealing that these laws could reduce drunk driving deaths by as much as 15 percent.

The cost of installing an ignition interlock ranges from $70 to $150, while it costs $60 to $80 for ongoing monitoring.

More than 300,000 of these devices had been installed in cars nationwide, as of 2013.

If you lost a loved one in a crash caused by drunk driving, contact the Fort Worth auto accident lawyers at Stephens, Anderson & Cummings for a free, no obligation legal consultation. We may be able to help you pursue compensation through a Texas wrongful death lawsuit.

We work on a contingency fee basis, which means there is no charge for our services unless there is a favorable resolution of your claim.

Call us today at (877) 920-9009 or complete a Free Case Evaluation form.