Program Type: Monitoring
Program Location: Washington
Lead Agency: Washington State Patrol Impaired Driving Section
Partners: Washington Traffic Safety Commission
The Issue: Recidivism
Program Target Population: Hardcore Offenders                                                              Repeat Offenders

Program Description:

The program seeks to reduce DUI recidivism through the introduction and use of ignition interlock devices and home alcohol monitoring units. The program is responsible for maintaining updated records of ignition interlock manufacturers and lists of approved service providers, and ensuring their compliance with NHTSA regulations, the Federal Registrar, the Washington Administrative Code and the Washington State Patrol’s policies and procedures. The program will annually audit all ignition interlock vendors/installers and conduct customer compliance checks to make sure the system is functioning correctly.

The program works to maintain high compliance rates for those requiring ignition interlocks. This is accomplished by training the judiciary and law enforcement on all aspects of the interlock program, working with the interlock community on uniform standards and regulations and following up on all instances of noncompliance from participants and vendors. The program works closely with all state agencies to monitor and implement legislative requirements of the interlock program.

Program Effectiveness:

A random residential interlock device compliance check shows that usage rates are at 41% in Yakima County and 74% in King County.

Program Cost Effectiveness: 

The Washington Ignition Interlock Program has one employee, the program coordinator, an arrangement which has made the program very financially efficient.

Source of Funding: 

This program is financed through a Washington Traffic Safety Commission Grant.

 Factors to Consider When Replicating the Program:

  • Obtaining continued funding
  • Recruiting staff members
  • Overcoming legislative obstacles
  • Educating law enforcement officials and judiciary members
  • Creating a supervising authority or agency for the program

Program Evaluation
Washington State’s Alcohol Ignition Interlock Law: Effects on Recidivism Among First-time DUI Offenders

For more information on this program, please contact:

Steve Luce