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All Press Releases for December 06, 2013 »
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Understanding ignition interlock devices

The installation of ignition interlock devices is a common consequence and part of a pilot program in four different California counties.
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    December 06, 2013 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Drivers in California face some of the strictest DUI laws and penalties in the nation. The installation of ignition interlock devices is a common consequence and part of a pilot program in four different California counties, including Los Angeles County.

What are the parameters of the pilot program?

Throughout California, the installation of an ignition interlock device is at the discretion of the court. However, in Sacramento, Tulare, Alameda and Los Angeles Counties, a pilot program has outlined very clear parameters for the use of these devices for drivers at least 21 years old.

Mandatory terms for the installation of an IID under the pilot program include:
- Either 5 or 12 months for a first time DUI conviction
- Either 12 or 24 months for a first time DUI conviction
- Either 24 or 36 months for a first time DUI conviction
- Either 36 or 48 months for a first time DUI conviction

Drivers convicted of the DUI only will receive the lesser sentence. Drivers convicted of other charges in addition to the DUI will receive the higher sentence.

How does an ignition interlock device work?

An ignition interlock device is electronically connected to a vehicle's ignition and has a handheld device part into which a driver breathes. The breath is tested to measure for any trace of alcohol. When the device is installed, it is programmed to note a particular threshold of the person's BAC.

If, upon taking the test, the driver's BAC is above this threshold, the car ignition is disabled until a later time when the driver is allowed to retake the test. If the BAC is below the threshold, the vehicle is allowed to be started and driven. Results of each test are stored and also transmitted to the court.

What is a rolling retest?

Once a driver has passed the test and successfully started the car, the system will issue a signal roughly five to 15 minutes later indicating that he or she is required to take the test again. Because the driver can literally take the test while the car is rolling, this is called a rolling retest.

Assuming the level is below the threshold, the driver can continue as normal. Further retests are signaled and taken randomly as long as the car is in operation. If the driver fails a retest, the vehicle will be allowed to continue in motion but signals will be given for the driver to stop. These can include flashing headlights and horn honking. This can continue until either the car is stopped or a subsequent test is passed.

Options for drivers

Every DUI arrest and charge is unique and requires proper handling in a solid DUI defense to help avoid a conviction or lessen sentences. If you have been arrested for a DUI and need help, talking with an experienced attorney is your best bet.

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