Don’t Hold Your Breath: Furthering the Fight Against Drunken Driving Until Autonomous Vehicles Arrive
By Russell Spivak, JD ’17[*]
Interlocking Ignition Devices (IIDs) restrict a driver from turning on a car unless he or she passes a Breathalyzer examination. There is significant reason to think that promoting—if not mandating—the installation of such technologies in all cars, regardless of their drivers’ drinking habits or driving records, would lead to a substantial decline in auto accidents, along with a commensurate recapture of economic value. This Article explicates why this life-saving technology has not been more widely adopted already. It then offers a few potential levers by which federal or state governments can induce or compel the adoption of these life-saving devices within the confines of administrative law and the strictures of federalism. Finally, the Article briefly details a few pragmatic issues associated with inducing the adoption of IIDs, including 4th Amendment concerns and the auto insurance industry’s response.