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MADD is Happy Over Strengthened Drunk Driving Laws

Jackson, Miss– the Mississippi Legislature voted to strengthen the state’s drunk driving laws and protect residents and visitors from this completely preventable crime by passing HB 1366 with amendments recommended by Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD).

HB 1366 requires ignition interlocks for all drunk drivers who seek driving privileges during a license suspension period. MADD thanks Representatives Andy Gipson and Patricia Willis for adopting MADD’s recommended amendments, which includes adding a critical element called “compliance-based removal” — validation of driving on an interlock before receiving unlimited driving privileges.

Also under HB 1366, as recommended by MADD, the Department of Public Safety will require all manufacturers of ignition interlocks to report ignition interlock data in a consistent and uniform format that will be used when sharing data with courts, alcohol safety education programs and other treatment providers.

MADD also thanks Senator David Parker for authoring SB 2778, which is similar to HB 1366.

“Recent events have shown the need to strengthen Mississippi’s ignition interlock laws to make sure interlocks are being used as ordered and that the data collected from the devices is shared with everyone who needs access to it,” said MADD National President Colleen Sheehey-Church. “MADD truly appreciates Chairman Gipson and Chairwoman Willis and Senator Parker for their leadership in protecting Mississippi roadways from drunk drivers.”

A recent MADD report found that ignition interlocks have prevented repeat drunk drivers from starting their vehicles 2,835 times in just one year since the state’s all-offender ignition interlock laws was enacted.

“Every time an ignition interlock stops a drunk driver, lives are saved,” Sheehey-Church said.

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