Delivers Lunch to Jail While Drunk, Gets OWI.

ignition interlocks for government vehiclesThere is no good place to drive while drunk. But some places might be a bit worse than others, at least in terms of how quickly you’ll get caught.  Recently a Wisconsin driver struck a fence post while making a food delivery to the Ferris Center, a county jail in Madison.

One thing you do find at jails is police, and they put the driver through the paces after the suspicious crash – breathalyzer and field sobriety. She was arrested for OWI – her third offense, according to news reports.

Idea: Ignition Interlocks in Government Vehicles

The damage in this case wasn’t bad – the worst effect was that lunch was delayed an hour. But drinking on the job can cost a lot – lives, limb, and property. In some cases, taxpayers can be liable for damages when employees drink and drive.

The answer is to prevent employees’ drinking and driving before it happens, with an ignition interlock. An ignition interlock, or car breathalyzer, prevents a vehicle from starting if the driver has been drinking. The devices are normally used after an OWI, though Wisconsin does not mandate them nearly enough.

Some private fleet owners use them on all vehicles to prevent their drivers from getting behind the wheel while impaired. It’s an excellent idea, since drunk driving civil suits can be crippling for businesses.

Government vehicles should use them too, to protect the drivers, others on the road, and taxpayers. It’s a small investment that has very little downside, and a big return on safety.