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DWI offenders can continue driving in Minnesota

Posted in Crime Prevention November 17th, 2009 @ 1:59 pm

The Minnesota Department of Public Safety is offering 400 DWI offenders to participate in the State’s Ignition Interlock Program. This program makes sure that certain DWI offenders can drive again by having an ignition interlock device installed in their vehicles.

The ignition interlock device prevents a vehicle from being started if the device detects an alcohol concentration level of 0.02. The driver needs to blow into a tube before starting the car. To make sure that the device is working correctly, the driver needs to re-test after the initial test. In addition, the device restricts others from starting the car and then allowing the offender to drive impaired.

Research from the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation reports interlock devices can reduce repeat DWI offenses by 45 percent to 90 percent. Currently, about 13 states have laws that require interlock use after a first-time DWI arrest. MADD nationally supports interlock for all DWI offenders.

A DWI conviction is costly. In order to drive again, you pay for the interlock program that costs $3 to $4 a day depending on the ignition interlock device. You also pay for the installation of the interlock that costs $90–$100 and removal fee of $50. Then you need to pay for your license reinstatement at a cost of $680, or for DWI driver’s exam fees that varies. Even if you don’t go along with the interlock program, DWI offenders still pay the reinstatement and related license fees once they are permitted to regain their license.

Best advice if you want to continue driving in Minnesota, don’t drive drunk.

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