Anxiety often accompanies getting stopped by a police officer. You may have thought that you had not violated any traffic laws, when suddenly you notice the blue lights in your rearview mirror and hear that tell-tale whoop of the siren. As you pull over, you may begin to worry about what the issue could be.
When the officer approaches your vehicle and informs you that your taillight is out, you may breathe a sigh of relief that the issue is relatively small. However, you may quickly find your anxiety mounting when the officer claims to notice an odor of alcohol and asks if you have been drinking. The next thing you know, you could have charges for driving under the influence brought against you and face the risk of having an ignition interlock device installed on your vehicle.
Ignition interlock devices
You may have heard of the installation of ignition interlock devices, but you may not fully understand what the device does or how it works to prevent drunk driving. In broad terms, the device attaches to a vehicle’s ignition and prevents the vehicle from starting if the device detects alcohol in a breath sample provided by the driver.
The device also requires multiple tests. The first test involves the driver blowing into the appropriate part of the device to provide the breath sample. If the device does not detect alcohol, the driver has no issue starting the car. However, if alcohol is present, the driver must wait and test again. The car will not start unless the driver provides a clean sample.
Some drivers may think that once the vehicle starts then they are free and clear. However, that is not the case. The ignition interlock device may require a rolling retest. This action means that the driver will need to provide a breath sample while operating the vehicle. If the device detects alcohol, it will likely cause the vehicle’s horn to honk and lights to flash to indicate that the driver should pull over.
In order for the court to deem this device necessary, a conviction for DUI must have taken place. If a stop for a broken taillight or other seemingly minor issue led to you facing allegations of drunk driving, you may fear that you could face a conviction. Fortunately, you do not have to immediately believe that this is your fate. You have the ability to create and present a defense against any charges brought against you, which could help you work toward an agreeable outcome.