Ignition interlock devices are used to prevent certain drivers from drinking and driving. They are installed inside the vehicle and connected to the ignition. The device is placed in a discreet location. IIDs will only allow the vehicle to start after the driver successfully passes a breathalyzer test. When a driver tries to start the vehicle without a breath test, the device will not allow them to do so. Upon successfully passing the BAC test, the car will start. In addition to starting the car, devices conduct breath tests at random intervals, the records of which are then electronically sent to the provider.
Considering that it's illegal to drive without an IID after the court orders it, those who violate a court ordered IID may see jail time. At sentencing, the judge will order you install an IID on your personal vehicle. The device must be installed by a licensed professional. In California, you will need to submit proof that the device was installed using DL Form 920 - Verification of Installation Ignition Interlock. In most cases, you are only authorized to drive your own car. Operating someone else's vehicle is considered a violation of your order.
The device keeps a log of every test administered through it. If the driver fails to pass the test, the car will not start. The device is triggered by the driver's exhalation. The vehicle will be shut off if the driver fails to comply with the tests. The interlock device will collect and monitor the data from each attempt. If you tamper with the device, you could see additional legal exposure, as well as a fee to replace the device from the provider.
The second step is to find a provider who can install and an IID. Often, the state will require an IID within 24 hours of an arrest. However, in some states, a driver must first complete a breath test before an IID can be installed. Failure to complete the test will cause the driver to lose their license for 24 hours. Once installed, an IID will continue to monitor the driver's behavior and log positive tests as they occur. Multiple failed BAC tests may lead to a driver being locked out of the system until the provider resets the device.
In the event that a driver fails to pass the breath test, the device will stop the car from starting. If the driver fails to do so, the device will also disable the vehicle's engine and record the violation. The system will then restart the vehicle only after the driver provides a clean breath sample after so many hours. If the device records a violation during a random test, it will record the violation, but it will not automatically shut down the vehicle if it's moving as that may pose a worse safety risk than the drunk driver.
Most people who have a DUI will be subject to an ignition interlock for six to 12 months. DUIs are serious crimes that could land you in jail for 6 months or more. The penalties for drinking and driving have become more serious in recent years, and the law requiring the use of an IID for commuting to work, school, or classes is a better alternative than not letting people go about their lives.
If you've been charged with a DUI but need to continue use of your vehicle, the DUI lawyers at Johnson Criminal Law Group can help make sure the court orders an Ignition Interlock Device for you while you serve your sentence.