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California Lawmaker Calls for Expansion of Ignition Interlock Device Program

ignition interlock device

California lawmaker calls for expansion of ignition interlock device program. There are serious consequences for violating California’s statute for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. In addition to significant fines and potential jail time, offenders may also be required to attend mandatory drug or alcohol counseling sessions or install an ignition interlock device in their vehicle. An ignition interlock device is a device similar to a breathalyzer that prevents a vehicle from being driven by people who have been drinking. When installed, the device requires the driver to blow into the device before starting the vehicle. If his or her blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is too high, the device will prevent the vehicle from starting. In order to ensure that it is really the driver of the vehicle blowing into the device, it also randomly requires the driver to blow into it while the vehicle is in operation. If the subsequent breath sample has a BAC higher than the allowed limit, the vehicle will be disabled and an alarm will be activated. The results of at least one study indicate that ignition interlock devices have a significant reduction on the likelihood that a person convicted of drunk driving will be rearrested for the same offense.

Ignition Interlock Device

Currently, not every person convicted of DUI in the state is required to install an ignition interlock device, a situation which may change if one California lawmaker’s proposal is successful. According to a report published by the San Jose Mercury News, state Senator Jerry Hill is planning on introducing legislation that would require that all first-time DUI offenders have an ignition interlock device installed in their vehicles. The law would expand upon a pilot program that currently imposes such a requirement for people convicted of DUI in the counties of Alameda, Los Angeles, Sacramento, and Tulane. Senator Hill proposed a similar message in 2013 which was not enacted by the legislature.

The installation of an ignition interlock device can impose a significant burden on drivers. They can be extremely expensive to install and maintain, often costing hundreds or even thousands of dollars over the course of the period that it is required. In addition, anyone who rides in a car in which an ignition interlock device will be aware that the owner of the vehicle has gotten a DUI, a situation that may be embarrassing and cause you to limit who you allow in your vehicle.

A DUI Defense Attorney May Be Able to Help

Fortunately for people who are accused of DUI in California, there are often many ways that an experienced criminal defense attorney can defend against allegations of DUI. In some cases, a lawyer may be able to have a DUI allegation reduced to a lesser offense, resulting in significantly reduced legal penalties. Because of the potentially serious legal consequences associated with a DUI, it is extremely important for even first-time offenders to retain qualified legal counsel as soon as possible. To schedule a consultation with one of our Santa Rosa DUI attorneys, Beck Law P.C. today at 707-576-7175.

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