Pa. Senate votes to expand use of anti-DUI device

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – The Pennsylvania Senate has unanimously approved legislation to expand the use of ignition interlock devices for people caught driving under the influence.

Senate Bill 290 would set up a limited license that allows DUI offenders to be immediately eligible for an ignition interlock in their primary vehicle if they did not have a prior offense within the past 10 years.

The bill’s sponsor, Senator John Rafferty (R-Berks/Chester/Montgomery), said research has shown a substantial number of first-time offenders will violate the terms of their license suspension and become repeat offenders.

“Ignition interlocks will place them in a controlled environment that will enable them to continue driving safely to work, school, etc,” Rafferty said in a statement. “It’s a win-win for public safety.”

Rafferty said ignition interlocks laws have been found to reduce repeat offenses by 67 percent. He said states with similar laws have significantly reduced drunk driving fatalities.

Senate Bill 290 now moves to the House of Representatives for consideration.

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