Under current Pennsylvania DUI laws if a person is convicted of a first offense DUI they are not mandated to install an ignition interlock in their vehicle. This is the case no matter what an individuals blood alcohol level is. An ignition interlock however is required to be installed in a vehicle for all repeat DUI offenders. The Pennsylvania ignition interlock law was first enacted to reduce repeat driving under the influences offenses and to improve highway safety. It appears this all could change thanks to Senate Bill 290.
An ignition interlock device is basically a breathalyzer that is hooked up to an individuals vehicle. A driver would be required to blow into a mouthpiece attached to this device before their car will start. The purpose of this device is to keep an intoxicated driver from being able to start their car. In addition to starting the vehicle, the device will also prompt the driver to blow into the device periodically when prompted to do so.
The Pennsylvania House of Representatives this past Monday voted 193-2 to require the use of an ignition interlock device for most drivers convicted of a first offense DUI. Just yesterday the bill was unanimously passed by the Senate and now it is expected Governor Tom Wolf will sign into law however the new provisions would not take effect for close to 15 months. Under this bill, an individual with a first time DUI conviction with a blood alcohol level of .10 % and greater would be able to avoid the one year license suspension (currently the law) by installing an ignition interlock device in their vehicle for one year. As it stands right now an individual can apply for an occupational limited license but they have to first serve 60 days of their suspension. This new law would allow a person to drive for employment, school, doctors office or even just to do daily errands. However if this bill is eventually signed into law it would not extend to commercial drivers, persons who are involved in a DUI related accidents where someone dies or people accepted into the diversionary program ARD.https://www.pennsylvaniaduilawyers.com/a-r-d-accelerated-rehabilitative-disposition.html. Many states around the country already have similar laws on the books for first time DUI offenders.