DPS Creates Alternative To Revoking License For DUI

Wednesday, November 20th 2019, 7:11 pm
By: Jonathan Cooper

Ignition Interlock Devices may soon become a lot more prevalent in cars across the state.

That's because of Senate Bill 712, which was passed last session and implemented this month.

It created the Impaired Driver Accountability Program and is ran through the Department of Public Safety.

The program gives DUI offenders the option of installing an IID and agreeing to be monitored, instead of DPS simply revoking their license for a set time.

"The system that we have had in place that revokes people's licenses…is outdated and we have technology that can help better manage this issue," said Kevin Behrens, the assistant general counsel for DPS.

DPS's Kevin Behrens said this is separate from the criminal portion of a DUI offense and only relates to the offenders driving privileges through DPS.

Behrens said statistics show many DUI offenders keep driving after their licenses are revoked, which was standard before this law.

This program lets them keep driving, but with safety measures in place.

"This gives the participant, gets them involved in dealing with their DUI arrest and it puts them in charge," said Behrens.

Behrens said offenders pay an enrollment fee and then purchase the IID from one of 8 companies approved by the state.

Smart Start and Intoxalock are two of them.

Data from the devices they install, which include a camera, are then stored, and sent to the state who can monitor driving patterns and compliance.

Certain guidelines must be met before they can complete the program.

Behrens hopes, it'll keep drivers safe.

"It may seem less burdensome, but I think it's more effective and that's what we're going for," said Behrens.

You can read the bill and learn more here.

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