Friday, January 18, 2008

Rep. Har on Vehicle Ignition Interlock

Rep. Sharon Har, who was hit by a drunk driver in 2006, has been advocating for vehicle ignition interlock systems since last session. Today, The Advertiser carries her op-ed on the issue. Here's an excerpt:

One of our greatest challenges in this legislative session is to dispel the many inaccuracies that have been reported during the early phases of ignition interlock.

The creativity and sophistication that offenders have shown when these programs were first introduced have allowed the interlock ignition industry to develop strategies that make the system accurate and successful. Temperature sensors make certain that fans or other compressed-air devices are not being used to cheat the system. Also, a small camera can be mounted on the steering wheel to match specific breath tests with a picture of the person giving the sample.

Running retests, which randomly call for an additional test while driving, guard against drinking after the initial test. These are just some of the measures in place to safeguard the public and the offender from the hazards of driving intoxicated.

1 comment:

accel ignition parts said...

Vehicle ignition interlock systems are not a new highway-safety concept. Hawai’i, unfortunately is one of five states that has yet to adopt these life-saving devices, which is why it is no surprise that we have the highest percentage of alcohol-related fatalities in the United States. Even most recently, there have been a multitude of drunken-driving accidents and fatalities in the state.

Due to advances in technology and painstaking trial-and-error in other states, Hawai’i is very fortunate to be in a position to pass legislation and to implement this program so that we can get drunk drivers off our roads and save lives.

In March 2006, the car that I was driving was hit head-on by a drunk driver. By the grace of God, and the cars we were driving, I did not sustain any serious injuries. After further investigation, I discovered that the young man who hit me had been arrested for drunk driving on several other occasions and that his license had been revoked. The fact that he was still driving demonstrates that revocation of licenses is not working to stop drunk driving.

As a result of my accident, I spoke with state Rep. Joseph Souki, chairman of the House Transportation Committee, about drafting legislation that would get drunk drivers off our roads to accomplish our ultimate goal of saving lives.