According the article below, it looks like the federal government is taking a real interest in mandating ignition interlock devices be installed in new vehicles in the future. Such devices are already required in parts of Europe. At least the comments made by the quoted legislator make a distinction between the “drunk driver” and the person who simply has a drink with dinner or a beer with a friend. Unfortunately, the current technology can produce false results and may inhibit otherwise sober drivers from getting their car to start and be left stranded. Oh well. That’s the price the majority of responsible drivers seemingly will have to pay for the sins of those who cannot be trusted to drive safely. Seriously, state DUI laws and now federal intervention are beoming so intrusive that it is simply not prudent to have any alcohol outside of your home. Perhaps this result is the end game goal. However, perfectly safe to drive individuals are being falsely arrested and prosecuted in the current DUI hysteria. We have effectively “thrown the baby out with the bath water.” Let’s be clear. Obviously, no one wants truly “drunk drivers” on the road. However, at some point, we have to have an effective balance so that innocent drivers are not branded with a DUI conviction on their permanent driving record. And, in this very difficult economy, the fines, court costs, alcohol programs, and SR-22 insurance can destroy a family’s finances as they try to “make ends meet.” All a reasonable person wants here is more selective arrests by police and more considered discretion by prosecutors. In the final analysis, it should be remembered that not everyone who has the “smell of alcohol” is guilty of drunk driving. If you or your family member have been arrested for a SC DUI or NC DWI, you should immediately consult an experienced DUI attorney and see what options are available to you before your driving record is ruined by a false charge of “driving under the influence” or “driving while impaired.” We hope that you will consider our firm after you review our credentials and experience in this complicated area of criminal law.

At Reeves, Aiken & Hightower LLP, our seasoned attorneys have over 70 years of combined trial experience in both civil and criminal courts.  We focus our criminal practice on DUI and DWI cases in both South Carolina and North Carolina and are available by mobile phone in the evenings, on weekends, and even holidays. Our lawyers are licensed in both states and are aggressive criminal trial attorneys.  We are not afraid to go to Court and often do. Don’t settle for a lawyer who only wants to reduce your DUI charges to reckless driving. We welcome the opportunity to sit down and personally discuss your case. Compare our attorneys’ credentials to any other firm. Then call us today at 877-374-5999 for a private consultation. Or visit our firm’s website at www.rjrlaw.com.

Washington Examiner by Paul Bedard

Not satisfied with putting federal restrictions on driver distractions like cellular phones, the federal government is pursuing technology to prevent cars from starting if drivers are legally drunk–even if they don’t have a DUI record.

Urged on by anti-alcohol groups like Mothers Against Drunk Driving, the Senate on a bipartisan vote OK’d a little-known amendment to the just-passed highway bill to provide $24 million over two years to study the “Driver Alcohol Detection System for Safety,” a Transportation Department project to put booze detectors in all new cars this decade.

The inevitability that the government will get its way is so great that car makers tell Washington Secrets that they are already planning how to introduce the voluntary systems, likely fingertip sensors on steering wheels or start buttons. The French already require a Breathalyzer system in new cars.

The American Beverage Institute, which represents thousands of restaurants, has mounted a campaign to kill the provision in the House version of the bill. ABI Managing Director Sarah Longwell said while the goal of ending drunk driving is admirable, bad readings by the system in tests show that an estimated 4,000 sober drivers a day won’t be able to start their cars, potentially scaring diners from restaurants.

But others in the alcohol industry have jumped on board and were able to block the Senate legislation from making the systems mandatory. One industry official said it’s more likely the system would be an option on cars, though some Transportation Department documents suggest it will be standard equipment.

A spokesman for Sen. Tom Udall, D-N.M., a sponsor of the initiative, cautioned that installation of car alcohol detection systems are years off and that the plan now is to simply find the easiest and most accurate technology. What’s more, he said that the goal is not to stop responsible drinkers from downing a beer at dinner, but target drunks responsible for thousands of deaths annually.