How the Ignition Interlock system Works to Safely Put Drivers Back on Road

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Trying to resume a normal life after a DUI conviction is difficult in a number of ways; it’s hard on families as well as the individual. The use of an Ignition Interlock device (IID) allows the individual with a DUI to drive his car again, in conditions that are safe for both the driver and the public as well.

Upon suspension or revocation of a license an individual may apply to the Department of Licensing for an IID license. This special license requires the user to install an ignition interlock device on every car he will be driving during the suspension period. The use of the IID means that the car can never be driven by an individual under the influence of alcohol.  The ‘blow & go’ method, as it’s sometimes called, is crucial to ensuring safety for drivers with DUIs.

How the Ignition Interlock Device Works

The Ignition Interlock device ( ) is installed in the driver’s car by a professional installer and remains there during the period of time specified under the conviction. It has a computer chip which records and stores all information from each blow in the device. Before the ignition can be started, the driver has to blow in the device to submit a breath sample for analysis; if the device detects the presence of alcohol, the car will not start and that information is recorded in the IID.

Once the breath sample is submitted and the breath alcohol content (BAC) level is at an acceptable level the driver is able to start the ignition. At set points during the operation of the car, the IID will prompt the driver to submit additional samples, these are called rolling retests. If at any point the breath sample does not meet the BAC standards, the device will note that failure and require you to have the unit serviced within 5 days.

The Maintenance of Your Ignition Interlock Device

It is important to use the IID correctly as all information is stored in the device’s computer and accessed by the Department of Licensing, in Washington State. Failure to comply with the restrictions of your suspension or revocation can affect the return of your regular license. So, it’s important to follow all the requirements for having the unit serviced as required. The unit must be recalibrated every 30-60 days, depending on where you live and what your DUI conviction requires.

The best way to ensure compliance is to work with a reputable company to install and maintain the IID. You want a company with good customer service, 24 hour emergency assistance and a mobile assistance component. Interlock NW of Washington State can provide you the support you need after a DUI, their support and service will put drivers safely back on the road. Their website provides detailed information on the use of the Ignition Interlock Device as well as a support forum for individuals with DUI convictions.

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Walker J. Thornton has 57 articles online

Walker is a freelance writer and member of the StringCan Interactive team as a content strategist focusing on strategic analysis, content collection, management of content, and publishing, which includes publication and post-publication digital activities. To contact her, visit the Beyond Words website.

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How the Ignition Interlock system Works to Safely Put Drivers Back on Road

This article was published on 2011/07/25