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mated the process by which violation letters are sent and provided data concerning the entire population in the study. Summarizing and standardizing the individual re- port is important for analyzing data logger events.The stan- dard report allows the data logger events to be downloaded into a very fast processing server with a statistical analyti- cal system (SAS) that is able to separate participants into categories, helping to ensure that everyone in the program is accountable for a monthly data logger. Staff reviewed only single-page reports of those that violated, eliminating manual review of the raw monthly data logger.

The SAS creates the report which includes violations and the 15 events before and after the violations—giving staff a view of what events happened around the time of the violation. The SAS summary report of violations dur- ing the time of participation in the program could later be used by the Medical Advisory Board (MAB) to assess violations and determine if there is a need to extend the program, or to recommend additional treatment, etc.

Eighty-nine percent of all participants violated the pro- gram requirements at least once, and 53 percent of all cases were referred to the staff physician, who either extended the length of time in the program (criterion based removal) or suspended/revoked driving priveleges. The data logger events revealed a trend in cases during the last 45 days of the restriction.This review showed that during the previous 45 days, some participants had multiple high BAC viola- tions, power disconnects, rolling retest refusals and failures. Few states have implemented an igntion interlock program similar to the ones that have been scientifically evaluated.

Factors for Success

Your program must have the following three elements to succeed:

k The installation of the device.

k The interlock restriction prominently on the front of the driver’s license.

k Close monitoring of driving in the program.

use and apply sanctions that closely resemble those conducted in research:

k Warning letters for the first violation. k Mid-month service monitoring for the second violation. k Extend the time of the restriction for the third violation.

k Schedule personal interview with a staff physician for the fourth violation.

k Suspend license for the fifth violation.

Research suggests all states establish removal-based criteria lasting up to two years for all drivers on the interlock. This permits the extension of the interlock device and adds an additional six months if the driver does not remain violation-free in the prior six months.

Figure 2 Data Logger Event Violations (in 24 months)

10000 9000 8000 7000 6000 5000 4000 3000 2000 1000

Control Treatment


Initial Test Failure

Retest Failure

Retest Failure



According to Dr.William J. Rauch, Principal Investigator of these studies, “it is not clear if such modified programs are effective in reducing recidivism or have other second- ary or tertiary benefits. It may be that, given the large num- ber of countermeasures that have been scientifically evalu- ated and found effective—and the fact that little reduction in alcohol-related traffic recidivism has occurred over the past decade—states just chose not to implement programs like those that have been found effective.”

But while many agencies are finding their sail through unknown waters with ignition interlock some- what shaky, this study shows a significant impact in de- terring drunk driving. M

For more information regarding Ignition Interlock studies, find this article in Move Online

k Create a database to track administrative process and performance of case managers.

k Ensure the location of the Interlock restriction is prominently on the front of the license in red lettering.

k Introduce summarized and standardized reporting from the vendors. Automate the letter writing for violations and congratulatory letters.

k Improve real time monitoring to less than 30 days of the violation. Expand the possibility of wireless technology.

k Work with legislators to ensure new regulations or laws that specifically mandate progressive sanctions for non-compliance and specifically mandate those that are eligible for the interlock program.

k Consider research for analysis on a randomized trial with the effects of suspension and revocation com- pared with randomized individuals with interlocks.

Armed with these tools, your jurisdiction’s interlock program should have a marked increase in effective- ness and help against the threat of drunk driver while improving the safety of the roads in your state.

Fall 2008 | MOVE 21

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