We’ve come across some rather interesting information about DUI (Driving Under the Influence) laws and how they vary state-by-state, but we’ll only share it with you if you promise to use it responsibly. Deal?
Wallet Hub has compiled information from all 50 states in the US to determine which are the most punitive when it comes to prosecuting cases of driving while drunk. Head on over to the Wallet Hub website for the full findings if you’d like, but we’re going to run through some of the headlines.
For starters, jail time depending on whether it’s one’s first DUI offense varies wildly; first-time offenders spend an average of 1 day in jail, versus at least 21 days for second-time offenders. That said, jail time does vary depending on state; Arizona has the longest minimum jail time for first-time DUI offenders, at 10 days.
Meanwhile, 37 states impose alcoholism assessment and/or treatment requirements for DUI offenders. An “ignition interlock device,” which requires a driver to blow into a breathalizer to verify sobriety before the car will start, is mandatory after the first DUI offense in 24 states. In 7 states, that interlock device is mandatory after only the second offense, and in 14 states, it is mandatory after an offense wherein the driver tests at a 0.15 blood alcohol level or above.
So at the end of the day, which states are most versus least strict when it comes to DUIs? Wallet Hub finds that in general, Arizona is the strictest, while South Dakota is the most lenient. It should be noted that the District of Columbia is regarded as a separate state (which places second-most lenient, FYI).