CHAPTER 437

FORMERLY

SENATE SUBSTITUTE NO. 1

FOR

SENATE BILL NO. 308

AS AMENDED BY HOUSE AMENDMENT NOS. 1, 2 AND 3

AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 11 AND TITLE 21 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO MOTOR VEHICLES; AND PROVIDING FOR AN IGNITION INTERLOCK DEVICE ACT.

WHEREAS, there is a need to reduce the incidence of drivers on the highways and roads of this State who, because of their use consumption, or possession of alcohol, pose a danger to the health and safety of other drivers; and

WHEREAS, one method of dealing with the problem of drinking drivers is to discourage the use of motor vehicles by persons who possess or have consumed alcoholic beverages; and

WHEREAS, the installation of an ignition interlock breath-alcohol device provides a means of deterring the use of motor vehicles by persons who have consumed alcoholic beverages; and

WHEREAS, ignition interlock devices are designed to supplement penalties which are intended to prevent a driver from operating a motor vehicle after using, possessing, or consuming alcohol; and

WHEREAS, it is economically and technically feasible to have an ignition interlock device installed in a motor vehicle in such a manner that the vehicle will not start if the operator has recently consumed alcohol.

NOW, THEREFORE:

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE:

Section 1. Amend §4177, Chapter 41, Part III, Title 21 of the Delaware Code by re-designating present subsection (e) as new subsection (f), and by re-designating present subsection (f) as new subsection (g).

Section 2. Amend §4177, Chapter 41, Part III, Title 21 of the Delaware Code by adding thereto a new subsection, designated as subsection (e), which new subsection shall read as follows:

"(e) In addition to or in lieu of any penalty for the violation of subsection (a) or subsection (b) of this Section, the Court may prohibit a person convicted under either subsection from operating any motor vehicle unless such motor vehicle is equipped with a functioning ignition interlock device; and such prohibition shall be for a period of not less than one year."

Section 3. Amend Subchapter IX, Chapter 41, Part III, Title 21 of the Delaware Code by re-designating present §4177F as new §4177I, and by re-designating each succeeding section in said subchapter accordingly.

Section 4. Amend Subchapter IX, Chapter 41, Part III, Title 21 of the Delaware Code by adding thereto the following new sections:

"§4177F. Ignition Interlock Device

(a) Where a person has been convicted a second or subsequent time within 5 years of a prior conviction, of any offense involving the use, consumption, or possession of alcohol while operating a motor vehicle, the Court may order that such person shall not operate any motor vehicle except one which is equipped with an approved ignition interlock device; and such restriction shall be for a period of not less than one year. Such restriction shall be in addition to any other penalty or restriction, or may be imposed where no other penalty or restriction is imposed. Any person who is restricted to an ignition interlock device shall purchase such device at his own cost.

(b) Notwithstanding any other provision of this Subchapter, a 'first offender' under §4177B shall have been 'convicted' for purposes of this section. For purposes of this section, the words 'ignition interlock device' or 'approved device' shall mean ignition equipment, approved by the Director of the Division of Motor Vehicles, designed to prevent a motor vehicle from being operated by a person who has consumed an alcoholic beverage. For purposes of this section, "certification" shall mean the essential requirement for approval of the Division. The Division of Motor Vehicles shall, consonant with the provisions of applicable State law, establish the required calibration setting; and shall provide standards for the certification, installation, setting, repair and removal of such devices.

(c) The Division of Motor Vehicles shall attach or imprint a notation on the driver's license of any person restricted under this section, stating that such person shall not operate any motor vehicle except one equipped with an ignition interlock device; or, in the Division's discretion, shall issue to such person at his own expense a restricted license which permits the holder to operate only those vehicles which are equipped with an approved device.

(d) If the Court imposes the use of an ignition interlock device as a term of probation on an offender whose driving privilege is not suspended or revoked, the Court shall require such person to provide proof to the Division of Motor Vehicles within three weeks thereafter that such a device has been permanently installed. If such offender fails to provide proof of installation within that period, absent a written finding of good cause for such failure, the Division shall report such failure to the Court, and the Court shall revoke or terminate such person's probation. The Division may, in lieu of proof of installment, require that the vehicle and device pass inspection by the Division.

(e) If the Court imposes the use of an ignition interlock device as a term of probation on an offender whose driving privilege is suspended or revoked for a period of less than three years, the Court shall require that such person report to the Division of Motor Vehicles at least once annually (or more frequently as the Court may order), on such forms and by such other proof as the Division may require, attesting to the condition and operation of each interlock device in such person's vehicle or vehicles. If such person fails to keep the device in good operating condition, the Division shall report such failure to the Court, and the Court may revoke such probation or issue such order as it deems appropriate. The Division may, in lieu of proof of such condition and operation, require that the vehicle and device be inspected by the Division at such times and under such conditions as the Division may deem necessary.

§4177H. Certification and Approval of Devices

(a) The Division of Motor Vehicles shall adopt and publish rules setting forth the requirements for obtaining certification of an ignition interlock device. No ignition interlock device shall be certified unless it meets the requirements specified and published by the Division. Such requirements shall include provisions for setting a calibration range which complies with §4177F and any other applicable law; and which shall include, but not be limited to, specifications that the device:

(1) does not impede the safe operation of the vehicle;

(2) has features that make circumvention difficult, but which do not interfere with the normal use of the vehicle; and

(3) resists tampering, and shows evidence of tampering if tampering is attempted.

(b) The cost of certification shall be borne by each manufacturer of an ignition interlock device who desires to have such device certified in this State."

Section 5. Amend Subpart D, Subchapter VI, Chapter 5, Title 11 of the Delaware Code by adding thereto a new section, designated as §1249, which new section shall read as follows:

§1249. Abetting the Violation of Driver's License Restrictions

(a) It shall be unlawful for any person to blow into an ignition interlock device, or to start a motor vehicle equipped with such a device, for the purpose of providing an operable motor vehicle to a person whose driving privilege is 'restricted.

(b) It shall be unlawful for any person whose driving privilege is restricted to request or solicit any other person to blow into an ignition interlock device, or to start a motor vehicle equipped with such device, for the purpose of providing the person so restricted with an operable motor vehicle,

(c) It shall be unlawful to tamper with, or to circumvent the operation of, any ignition interlock device.

(d) A violation of this section shall be a Class A misdemeanor; provided however, that a second or subsequent conviction of a violation of this section shall be a Class G felony. Where a person violates this section, and such violation is a direct cause of the subsequent death of any person, such violation of this section shall be a Class G felony. The Superior Court shall have jurisdiction over all violations of this section."

Section 6. The Court shall notify the Division of Motor Vehicles of each order requiring the use of an ignition interlock device, and the Division shall stamp the record of each such offender who is required to use such a device, or shall otherwise reflect in its records that such person is required to use an interlock device.

Section 7. The provisions of this Act shall not become effective until the first February 1 after the Division of Motor Vehicles has completed a six-month pilot program, which pilot program shall be a six month implementation of this Act in one county of the State, which shall begin six months after the Governor has signed this Act. Upon the completion of the pilot program, the Secretary of Public Safety shall evaluate the pilot program and report to the General Assembly as to whether the provisions of this Act should be implemented statewide or discontinued altogether. The provisions of this Act shall automatically become effective on the first February 1 following the completion of the pilot program if legislation is not passed to discontinue the provisions of this Act and remove them from the Code.

Section 8. This Act shall be known as, and may be cited as, the Ignition Interlock Device Act.

Approved July 24, 1990.