Would Tougher Sanctions Help Halt Drunk Driving?
Austin, TX (Law Firm Newswire) May 30, 2014 – South Carolina has enacted new drunk driving legislation: “Emma’s Law.” It increases sanctions for driving while impaired.
“Texas has the dubious distinction of being one of the top states with the highest number of drunk drivers. The latest numbers from 2011 show 46 percent of all fatalities were related to driving while impaired. A total of 3,016 accidents were recorded that year, with 1,397 drunk driving accidents. Almost 40 percent of the drunk drivers were also over 0.08,” says Austin attorney, Bobby Lee of Lee Gober & Reyna. If legislation such as this works in South Carolina, something similar may work in Texas.
Emma’s Law toughens the penalties for drivers charged with a DUI. Under the auspices of this legislation, every first time DUI driver, convicted of driving with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) over .15, must install an ignition interlock for six months. The device prevents the vehicle from starting if the driver has a BAC of 0.02 or higher.
“An added sanction is that the driver’s license must say they are required to have an interlock device to prevent them from driving another vehicle,” Lee points out. The law does have certain options available for convicted first time offenders with a BAC between 0.08 and .14.
They may choose to put an interlock device in their vehicle instead having restrictions on where they may travel. They may also opt for a restricted license that only permits them to attend addiction meetings. Should a repeat offender be convicted with a BAC of over 0.08, they must install an interlock ignition for two years.
“A law like this one may make a huge difference is Texas. It’s worth trying, as it would save lives. Drunk driving is 100 percent preventable. Our firm sees too much carnage on the highways as a result of drunk driving. Think. Don’t drink and drive,” says Lee.
Lee, Gober & Reyna
11940 Jollyville Road #220-S
Austin, Texas 78759
- Driving while distracted? Know the facts.
Distracted driving usually entails texting or calling while behind the wheel. Many people think it’s not a big deal to take a call or answer a message because they are solidly competent drivers when paying attention. Know the facts: Drivers are twice as likely to be involved in an accident while texting. Eleven percent of all drivers under 20 years of age who are involved in a fatal accident were driving distracted. Sixty percent of drivers use mobile devices while driving. Seventy-eight percent of young adults and teens say they read messages while behind the wheel. Seventy-one percent say they […]
- Could MADD plates work in Texas?
South Carolina’s MADD came up with a new way to drive home the message that drunk driving kills – a new special license plate remembering drunk driving victims. In South Carolina alone, drunk driving claimed 358 victims in 2012. That year, more than 10,000 died across the nation. A $20 bill buys the plate, and ten dollars of the initial sale goes to support MADD’s work in the purchaser’s state. Could this work in Texas? No reason why it couldn’t be tried. It’s one more effective, visual, and very mobile campaign to repeat the oft-heard refrain: don’t drink and drive. […]
- Warsaw researchers design a new way to detect alcohol in a moving vehicle
In breaking news, scientists working for the Military University of Technology in Warsaw have developed a laser system able to detect alcohol in moving cars while standing at roadside. The laser detects alcohol vapors, then sends a message, a snapshot of the car and the license plate number to a waiting police officer. The vehicle can then be stopped by law enforcement, and the officer has the opportunity to conduct further traditional roadside alcohol tests. The benefits of such a system are immediately obvious. It would reduce the number of cars that need to be manually checked by police, and […]
- Eighteen-wheelers can cause major, fatal traffic accidents
On a recent Sunday evening, an 18-wheeler found itself stalled on I-35 South at Rittiman Road. As a result, several other vehicles behind the big rig were involved in a chain-reaction crash. There were a number of serious injuries, and the police shut that section of the Interstate down until they could clean up the debris left by the accident and transport injured drivers to various medical facilities for care. A police investigation was launched to determine the exact cause of the accident and to find out whether or not the truck had a mechanical defect that caused it to […]
- Repeat drunk driving offenders are not uncommon
Despite drunk driving campaigns and a series of laws relating to DWIs, repeat drunk driving offenders remain common. James Fisher has been arrested 12 times since 1991 for driving while intoxicated. Fisher’s last arrest took place just after his release from prison for serving time for a 2009 DUI conviction. There are hundreds of cases like this every year. According to the Department of Safety and Homeland Security, 37 percent of the 5,400 individuals arrested for DUI in 2012 were repeat offenders. Many states have extremely strict DWI laws and steep fines, but they have not stopped some people from […]