It seems that no matter how many laws are set up to prevent motorists from driving under the influence, there is always someone (who for lack of better judgment) decides to get in the car and drive home after a pub crawl out with friends on a Saturday night.
If you were pulled over on the highway before causing any real damage to yourself or another person, you’re one of the lucky ones, even if you live in one of the most stringent drinking and driving states: Arizona, Florida and South Carolina. It’s in these states that the rates of your DUI auto insurance are most affected. Let’s take a look as to why.
The Cost of Driving Under the Influence
Excuses like “I know my limit” or “I only had a few drinks” get people to make not-so-smart decisions behind the wheel. In 2014 alone, nearly 10,000 people were killed in drunk driving accidents. Those deaths accounted for 31 percent of all collision-related fatalities in the United States. Innocent people died because someone thought living “only five minutes” away was worth getting in the car and heading home, sober or not. While the human cost far outweighs the financial cost, the Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association (RMIIA) reports that drunk driving accidents cost $199 billion in quality-of-life losses.
Driving Under the Influence in Arizona
According to HG.org, it was after Arizona required that an ignition interlock device be put in the vehicles of all first-time DUI offenders that the state became one of the most strict DUI states. Acting as a Breathalyzer, the ignition interlock device will prevent the car from starting if the driver blows over a .08 Blood Alcohol Content level (BAC) reading. Additional punishments include fines with a starting level of $1,250, community service, jail time and a suspended license lasting 12 months.
Driving Under the Influence in Florida
If you are caught drinking and driving in Florida, you face up to serving nine months in jail with a driver’s license suspension equaling six months. Starting fines range between $500 and $2000, not including legal fees. Like Arizona, Florida has mandated that all DUI offenders install an ignition interlock device in their vehicles.
Driving Under the Influence in South Carolina
In South Carolina, your biggest expense comes in jail time served. After you have been apprehended for DUI, you will spend 48 hours in a jail cell. If have a BAC level double the legal limit, that 48 hours turns into a month. Monetary fines include a range between $400 and $1,000 with a license suspension equating six months.
Don’t Let it Happen to You
Though auto insurance laws differ from among states, they do all have one thing in common: driving under the influence is illegal. If you breathe a BAC level of .08, you risk going to jail, getting your license revoked and paying expensive fines.
By our own research, when you are convicted of a DUI (no matter the state), your insurance premiums rise by as much as 94.13 percent. This rate inflation will stay with for years after your conviction.
One way to get a lower premium is by comparing DUI auto insurance quotes with CoverHound. Click here for rates now.