With some of the toughest DWI laws in the U.S., it is surprising that New Mexico still has such a high rate of drunk drivers on the roads. Currently, ignition interlock devices are required for all New MexicoDWI offenders, but too many offenders see the devices as options, choosing instead to drive illegally and possibly intoxicated.
New Mexico DWI numbers are down, but lawmakers may have more in store for drunk drivers in the state.
An interlock license and requirement aren’t infallible, and determined DWI offenders can still find a way drive illegally, and sometimes while intoxicated. The newly proposed law would make it impossible for New Mexico DWI offenders to purchase alcohol when they carry an ignition interlock license. It may seem like an additional effort to target those who are already restricted to sober driving, but in most states (including New Mexico), enforcing ignition interlock requirements seems to be a challenge still. By removing access to alcohol, or the purchase of alcohol, there is less chance of someone buying a six pack and then heading out with the intention of driving home once that sixer is gone.
New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez has spent her time in office restricting DWI offender’s ability to continue to commit drunk driving crimes. She has long supported stronger ignition interlock laws and harsher penalties for DWI offenders across the state.
Many times a DWI is the result of a lapse of judgment, with a very humbled offender coming out on the other side. However, New Mexico also has a high rate of repeat DWI offenders – some with up to 10 or more drunk driving convictions. If a law can add to the challenges faced by those who cannot be trusted to make the right call after drinking, then the whole arsenal of New Mexico drunk driving laws and consequences can have a positive impact on everyone’s lives.