Ignition interlock devices (IID) are machines that will prevent a driver from starting their vehicle if it detects alcohol on their breath. This will require that the driver blow into the device for some time, similar to the breathalyzer used by police in a DUI arrest, in order to read their BAC. If a certain amount of alcohol (usually a very low amount) is detected, the car will not start. A driver will have to wait to sober up before they are able to drive their car if their BAC is too high.
Is having an ignition interlock device really so bad?
In order to ensure that drivers do not cheat the IID by having a sober friend blow into the device to start the car, IIDs often have systems built in that require periodic checks of sobriety. At points during the drive, the driver will be prompted to breathe into the device. If it reads alcohol while they are driving, law enforcement will be notified and the driver may face penalties for attempting to bypass an IID.
A California driver may be forced to install an IID for a first-time DUI conviction should the judge decide that it is necessary. This usually occurs when a BAC is extremely high or when a breath test was refused. Some counties in the state require that a first-time driver have an IID installed no matter what the details of the case.
IIDs can be a costly penalty for individuals convicted of DUI. For example, motorists will be required to pay for installation and removal costs, as well as calibration fees that can be assessed monthly. Violations can also cost motorists more in fees. The monthly costs also go to keeping law enforcement and the Department of Motor Vehicles aware of any time that the driver blows into the device with a measurable BAC. IIDs are a common penalty in felony and multiple DUI cases.
With the measurable costs and criminal penalties that can arise from having an IID, avoiding an IID in a car is ideal. Hiring a DUI defense lawyer can help. Working to reduce or eliminate charges can lessen the likelihood that the privilege to drive will not be hampered by a restrictive device.
If you have questions about your case and how the Law Offices of Virginia L. Landry, Inc. may be able to protect your from the penalties you face, contact our firm today.