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Questions about the Effectiveness of Certain VASAP Programs

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The Virginia Alcohol and Substance Abuse Program, or VASAP, is charged with overseeing programs that are designed to reduce drunk driving. DUI offenders across Virginia must participate in one or more of these programs. But are all of these VASAP programs effective?

Ignition Interlock Devices

One of the most frequently used VASAP programs involves the installation of ignition interlock devices (IID) in the vehicles of DUI offenders. Drivers are supposed to breathe into this device, which determines blood alcohol content. If the driver "fails" the breath test, the IID prevents the vehicle from starting.

But a California Department of Motor Vehicles study in 2004 casts doubt on whether IID programs really accomplish their goals. The study showed that these devices did prevent DUI recidivism. However, it also revealed that many DUI offenders who were instructed to install IIDs in their vehicles never actually did so.

And researchers discovered something curious: the people who were supposed to install ignition interlock devices on their cars but did not had a lower incidence of traffic accidents. This finding was attributed to the notion that these individuals drove more cautiously and logged fewer miles because they didn't want to be arrested again.

Virginia IID Program Flaws

The implementation of IIDs in Virginia also has its flaws. For one thing, VASAP does not operate in every county, and many of its offices that do exist do not offer ignition interlock devices. This results in higher costs and added inconvenience for many Virginia DUI offenders who are ordered to install these devices in their vehicles.

If you have concerns about ignition interlock devices or your obligations in VASAP, you should contact your Virginia DUI attorney for assistance.

In the face of this tremendously stacked deck, you get to pick one person to be on your side - your lawyer. This decision of who will be your lawyer will be one of the most important decisions you make in your life. Bob Battle relishes and thrives in his role of "going to battle" for the legal underdog.

To learn more about Virginia DUI, get a free copy of Bob Battle's consumer guide, How to Choose a DUI Lawyer in Virginia. Or, contact 804-673-5600 to schedule your legal consultation today.

Bob Battle
100% of my practice is devoted to serious traffic defense and criminal litigation in state and federal courts
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