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Maine’s New OUI Deal

Joe Raedle — Getty Images

First-time OUI offenders have a chance to get back on the road sooner.

A new Maine law will allow convicted drunken-drivers get back on the road after just 30 days. The lesser suspension time comes with a deterrent, the driver must prove they’re sober every time they’re behind the wheel.

An ignition interlock device can be installed in the offender’s vehicle, which will not allow the car to start until the driver has submitted a sober breath test. A few minutes later the driver will have to pull over and resubmit another breath sample to prove they are the one driving. The car wont shut off but the vehicles horn will sound and lights will flash until another under 0.08% breath sample is submitted.

Drivers pay $100 license reinstatement fee and $2.50 a day to lease the device. It’s a lot better than the alternative of 180 days suspended, if you choose not to use the device.

The law, L.D. 1260, was backed by unanimous support from the Legislature’s Criminal Justice Committee. It has received praise from AAA of Northern New England and Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

The law goes into effect December 1st. Maine will join 19 other states using ignition interlock devices.

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