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TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami/AP) — There could be more severe penalties on the way for first time drunk driving offenders.
A bill that would require an ignition interlock device on someone’s vehicle after their first drunken driving conviction has passed its first committee in the Florida House of Representatives.
The bill (HB 949) passed the Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Tuesday. It must go through two more committees before reaching the House floor.
The interlock device prevents a vehicle from starting if the driver has been drinking. The current law makes it mandatory for six months for a first offense if the person’s blood alcohol content is higher than 0.15 percent or a minor is in the vehicle. The devices are also mandatory for multiple DUIs.
There are approximately 9,000 interlock devices active in Florida at any given time.
Florida would join 28 other states and the District of Columbia with similar laws.
(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)