DUI car locks could be coming to California

By Ron Naso
Published 8:58 am PDT Sunday, May 25, 2008

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) — A vote on ignition interlock devices goes before the Assembly in Sacramento this week. The special breathalyzers are nothing new in other states, but if passed this week in the Assembly, and approved by the Governor, it’s a first for California.

Matthias Mendezona, the executive director of California’s Mothers Against Drunk Driving says there are too many DUI related accidents resulting in death.

“It is preventable, we can use research and technology to make this work, and that’s the logic behind it,” said Mendezona.

However, The American Beverage Institute views the DUI locks much differently.

“Once these are in all cars they’re going to be set much, much lower than .08, so it is going to effectively eliminate somebody’s ability to have a glass of wine with dinner, or a beer at a ball game and then drive home,” said Sarah Longwell, managing director of the ABI.

Assembly Bill 2784 would require all convicted drunk drivers, including those facing their first conviction, to install an interlock on their vehicle for a specified period of time in order to have their license reinstated.