Dallas, TX- Drunken driving may be on the decline nationwide, but this risky behavior is still a plague on the nation’s roads. Over the decades, lawmakers in all states have worked on legislation to curb instances of drunken or drugged driving and discourage repeat offenses. Texas is one of the latest states to take steps to curtail first-time and repeat DWI offenses.

One of those steps is to make ignition interlock devices mandatory for first-time DUI offenders. In case you don’t know, an ignition interlock device is similar to a breathalyzer and is wired into the ignition or a DWI offender’s car. Every time that person wishes to drive somewhere they must blow into the device before their vehicle starts. If a DWI offender is over the legal limit (0.08 percent in Texas), their vehicle won’t start. DWI offenders with ignition interlock devices are also required to blow into the device while they are driving to ensure they are actually sober and didn’t enlist someone to blow into the ignition interlock for them.

Because they are so effective in reducing DWI recidivism, last fall lawmakers in Texas passed a law that made ignition interlocks mandatory for all DWI offenders in the state whether they are facing their first or a repeat offense. Texas now joins the ranks of nearly two dozen states that require ignition interlock devices for first-time DWI offenders. The law went into effect on September 1st and could have an impact on the consequences and costs you face for a DWI conviction in Texas.

An ignition interlock device is costly on top of being inconvenient. A DWI offender must pay to have the device installed in their vehicles and pay to have their ignition interlock device calibrated each month. If they are not regularly calibrated, an ignition interlock device can give inaccurate readings which could, in turn, lead to additional legal troubles.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, ignition interlock devices reduce DWI recidivism by 70 percent while they are installed in an individual’s vehicle. Requiring ignition interlocks are not a cure-all for drunken driving but it can prevent some people from making a mistake that will affect all aspects of your life.

If you are facing a DWI charge in Dallas, USAttorneys recommends you contact a defense lawyer immediately. A DWI charge may seem like a minor charge, but it’s not and you could lose your freedom, your driving privileges and shell out thousands of dollars if you are convicted. With a vigorous defense, you can avoid a conviction altogether or at least minimize the resulting penalties if conviction is unavoidable.

You need to reach out to a DWI lawyer in Dallas to assist you with your case. USAttorneys recommends Dallas DWI defense lawyer Robert S. Gregg to work on your defense. You can count on Mr. Gregg to be dedicated to your case from beginning to end and take every step possible to keep a DWI from ruining your life.