ALBANY, NY (WENY)–On October 28, 2018 Erica Linn woke up excited to celebrate her 50th birthday. By the end of the day both of her parents died in a drunk driving collision.
“I walked in, and I saw this surgeon standing there talking to my sister covered in my mother’s blood,” Linn recalled.
Linn said she then learned that her mother had died.
“I let out a guttural scream that I never knew existed in me and I collapsed to the floor,” she said.
Linn said she traveled to Albany Monday to push for legislation that intends to reduce drunk driving deaths.
According to the New York State Police, drunk drivers cause more than 17,000 deaths annually.
A bill recently passed in the Senate and stalled in an Assembly committee intends to reduce drunk driving deaths by requiring people in violation of certain driving while intoxicated or DWI offenses to have an ignition interlock monitor installed.
An ignition interlock device requires a driver to breathe into a monitor device that detects their blood alcohol concentration. The interlock will not allow the car the start at a level of 0.25%.
The legal limit in New York is 0.08%.
“This device can save lives,” said Assembly Member Carrie Woerner (Assembly District 113).
Assembly Member Woerner said an individual convicted of a DWI, driving while intoxicated and DWAI, driving while ability impaired crime pays for the device themselves. The cost is about $3 a day over a period of six months.
Woerner said the Assembly Transportation committee, where the bill is currently stalled, has some concerns of affordability.
Woerner also said they plan to continue working the bill through the committee process.