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Governor mulls bill for ignition device to stop impaired drivers

No matter how many public service campaigns are focused on the dangers of drinking and driving, many motorists continue to defy the laws. Sadly, innocent people often pay the price when they are involved in accidents caused by impaired drivers. Recently, Kentucky lawmakers passed a bill that hopes to reduce the numbers of drunk driving crashes.

The bill would provide an option for those who have been charged with impaired driving to elect to have an ignition inter-lock device installed in their automobiles. The device is wired into the vehicle's ignition system and prevents a driver from starting the motor until he or she has breathed into the sensor to ensure that the blood alcohol level does not exceed the legal amount. Those who choose to have the devices installed will see their license suspensions reduced.

Two organizations, Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) and the Kentucky Distillers' Association, have advocated passage of the bill. Lawmakers cited the statistics from states that have passed similar that show a 16 percent reduction in the numbers of fatalities that can be attributed to drunk driving. The bill has progressed through both legislative branches and is awaiting the governor's signature.

If an offender chooses not to have the ignition device installed, he or she will face a longer suspension of driving privileges. The governor has not stated whether he intends to sign the bill into law. Though the bill may help reduce the chances that impaired drivers will get behind the wheel, it is unlikely that these types of senseless crashes will end anytime soon. Those who have been injured or have lost loved ones due to the negligent actions of another motorist may choose to seek the guidance of an experienced attorney in order to assess whether there are grounds to pursue recovery of documented losses through the civil courts.

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