Washington D.C.—Today, the Florida House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee will consider H.B. 949—which would require low blood-alcohol content (BAC) and first-time DUI offenders to install ignition interlock devices (IID) into their vehicles.
Sarah Longwell, managing director of the American Beverage Institute, released the following statement:
While the American Beverage Institute supports mandated ignition interlocks for high-BAC and repeat offenders, we do not support the legislation that the senate subcommittee is considering today—which expands the mandate to first-time and low BAC offenders. The bill blatantly ignores the real problem—high-BAC drunk drivers. In Florida specifically, 65 percent of alcohol-related traffic fatalities involve a driver with a BAC of .15 or above—almost double the proposed limit to require IIDs. Furthermore, the average BAC of a drunk driver involved in a crash is .18. These are the dangerous drunk drivers that Florida law enforcement and traffic safety officials need to focus their resources on.
Instead of targeting DUI offenders with one-size-fits-all legislation, Florida lawmakers need to stick with their current high-BAC and repeat offender IID law that focuses on the truly dangerous drunk drivers—not someone that’s one sip over the legal limit.