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NJ DWI Measure Offering Punishment Option Passes Out Of Committee

Car keys and an alcoholic drink (credit: clipart.com)

Car keys and an alcoholic drink (credit: clipart.com)

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TRENTON, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – A bill making its way through the New Jersey legislature would give drivers convicted of a DWI a choice in how they’re punished.

As WCBS 880’s Levon Putney explained, a measure just passed out of the Senate judiciary committee would give convicted drunk drivers caught with a blood alcohol content between .08 and .10 the option of installing ignition interlock devices in their cars or having their licenses revoked.

Cathleen Lewis of AAA North Jersey said the proposal is a good one.

“Because, A, it addresses the issue of people who are gonna drive while suspended anyway,” she told Putney.

She added that the ignition interlock device will work to stop people from driving drunk or buzzed like they had in the past.

“You are gonna start to change your behavior so that you can get home and so that you don’t have to have that device in your for longer periods of time,” Lewis said.

The ignition interlock device works by requiring the driver to submit to a Breathalyzer-like test to check the blood alcohol level before allowing the car to be started.

Lewis said AAA would like the interlocks to engage at .04 blood alcohol level instead of .08 as written in the bill.

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