In addition to the other possible penalties and consequences accused drivers face, including potential jail time, fines and license suspension, drivers may also be required to install an ignition interlock device on their vehicle as part of the penalties associated with drunk driving charges. As a result, drivers accused of driving under the influence should be familiar with how ignition interlock devices work.

An ignition interlock device is a device that measures the blood alcohol content level when the driver blows into the device before driving. If ignition interlock device measures alcohol on the driver’s breath, the ignition will be disabled and they will be unable to start the vehicle. The device will usually disable the ignition for a lock-out period during which time the driver will be unable to start the vehicle. The lock-out period can increase with repeated, failed, attempts.

The installation of an ignition interlock device on the accused driver’s vehicle may be required at the accused driver’s expense. Drivers may be responsible for fees including for the device itself; installation of the device; fees associated with monitoring and calibrating the device; any insurance fees or security deposit required for the device. Laws concerning the installation and inspection requirements for ignition interlock devices can vary by state.

Similarly, ignition interlock device requirements can also depend on the charges the accused individual is facing and the state they live in. With so many negative repercussions associated with DUI charges, it is essential for accused drivers to know how to protect themselves.