If you have been arrested, charged, and convicted of a DUI, you may be ordered by the court to have an ignition interlock device installed on your car. This device is a breathalyzer connected to your car’s dashboard and wired into your ignition system. Depending on the state, you may be required to have the device installed after your first or second DUI within a period of time. In general, you will need to have it for a period of 6-24 months.
The ignition interlock device will prevent your vehicle from starting if, after you blow into it, it detects your BAC being above the programmed limit. If it detects alcohol, the device will report it as being a positive test. This can be downloaded by your probation officer which may result in revocation of your license, jail time, and other penalties. If you’ve submitted a positive test from an ignition interlock device, calling a DUI lawyer may be in your best interest.
You Should Not Tamper with These Devices
As a DUI lawyer, like a Civic Center San Francisco, CA DUI lawyer from Hallinan Law Firm, might explain to you, these devices have been manufactured in a way that they cannot be manipulated. For example, once the engine starts, the device may at some point require a random breath sample. If this is not provided, it will log the incident. Again, the prosecutor can review this failure to provide a breath sample.
Costs of Having an Ignition Interlock Device
The court will be responsible for ordering you to have an ignition interlock device; however, you will be responsible for paying the installation and rental fees. An average cost of installation is $100 to $300 and the monthly rental fee can be $60-$150. These fees do not include the calibration or maintenance charges. Some installation outlets will refuse to install the device in high end luxury cars or rare cars for fear of damaging the vehicle. If this applies to you, a DUI lawyer may be able to ask the court for a different solution. Installation takes 2-3 hours to complete, but can be more complicated with certain vehicles. You should ensure the shop will be able to install the device on your car before you schedule the install.
Being on Probation
The most important information you should take away from this article is the fact that your probation officer will be able to access every sample on your device. If you are on probation, you are prohibited from consuming alcohol – not just being intoxicated.
As a result, if you submit a positive sample or fail to provide a sample, your probation officer may ask the court to revoke some or all of your probation. He or she might also issue an immediate warrant for your arrest. In this case you would be picked up and sent to jail until your hearing.
It must be noted that the device does not differentiate between ethyl alcohol found in alcoholic beverages and isopropyl alcohols found in mouthwash. There are known cases of people who did not drink, but used mouthwash and failed their device test. Although this may be considered a false positive, the prosecutor might not believe you.
If you have failed an interlock ignition device test,or have otherwise been caught driving under the influence, please call a DUI lawyer now.