St. Louis Public Radio News
8:42 am
Mon December 28, 2009

DUI law in Illinois doubled number of interlock devices

Springfield, Ill. – Advocates say a year-old Illinois DUI law is saving lives.

As of last Jan. 1, Illinois law requires first-time DUI offenders to install a Breathalyzer in their vehicles in order to keep driving.

Officials say about 6,100 of the devices have been installed. Before the law, about 3,000 Illinoisans with multiple DUIs had the devices.

The ignition interlocks prevent engines from starting until drivers blow into the alcohol detectors to prove they're sober.

The device also does periodic checks to keep drivers from getting someone else to blow for them to get the vehicle started.

Susan McKinney is the program's director. She says putting the devices in for first-time offenders may keep them from driving drunk again.