New York has joined the list of states using ignition interlock devices (IIDs) to deter repeat DUI/DWI offenses. Ignition interlock devices use a breathalyzer to test the amount of alcohol in a person's system, and they keep a car from starting if the driver's blood alcohol content is above a certain level (usually more than .02%). Starting in September 2010, anyone convicted of driving while intoxicated (DWI) in New York -- even if it's a first offense -- will be required to pay for the lease and installation of an ignition interlock device in their vehicle.
Most other states give the court discretion to require the use of an ignition interlock device in a particular case, and/or require it for second and subsequent DUI/DWI offenses. A few states, such as Hawaii, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Mexico, and Oregon, already require the use of IIDs for first (and subsequent) offenses.