If you are convicted of drunk driving in the state of Alabama, you may be required to have an ignition-interlock device installed in your vehicle. In October of 2011, Alabama became the 50th state in the U.S. to require the use of ignition-interlock devices, or IIDs, for some DUI offenders after a conviction.
Ignition-interlock devices are connected to your vehicle's ignition. You are required to pay the cost of the installation, and the IID will inconvenience everyone who tries to drive your vehicle. The Aniston Star reports that the initial installation cost of an ignition-interlock device can run anywhere from $500 to $600 and that you will be expected to pay maintenance fees of as much as $75 per month. This can be a major burden if you are convicted of intoxicated driving and required to install the device. Now federal lawmakers are pushing to expand the use of IIDs. Drivers accused of drunk driving need to speak with a DUI defense attorney in Birmingham for help avoiding conviction and the IID requirement.
Ignition Interlock Devices in Alabama
Under the revision to Alabama's drunk driving laws that passed in 2011, any drunk driving offender who has a blood-alcohol content of .15 or higher at the time of his arrest must install an ignition interlock device in his or her vehicle. Offenders who are convicted for driving drunk a second time are also required to install an IID. In both cases, the motorist will need to keep the device installed in the vehicle for two years. The requirement to have an IID will be noted on your driver's license during this period of time.
For offenders who are convicted of a third DUI, the requirement changes and the IID must be used for three years. Finally, for a person convicted of a fourth or subsequent drunk driving offense, the use of an ignition interlock device is mandated for a period of five years. These provisions and requirements are the same throughout Alabama in all neighborhoods including South Side, Titusville, Red Mountain, Woodlawn, Ensley and other locations statewide.
When an ignition interlock device is installed in your car, you are required to blow into the device to provide a breath sample before you can start your vehicle. If your blood-alcohol content is below .02, then your car will start. If not, then you will not be able to drive the vehicle.
In addition to the test at the start of driving, "rolling re-tests" are also required, which means you'll be required to blow into the IID at various times while you are driving to make sure you are still not over the limit. If you fail the rolling re-test, an alarm sequence will go off and the vehicle lights will start flashing. This will continue until you submit a clean breath test.
This whole process of using an IID can be unpleasant, but the only way to avoid an IID is to avoid conviction for a repeat offense or avoid conviction for a BAC above .15. An experienced attorney can help you to do everything possible to avoid being required to use an IID.
The NTSB, however, is urging lawmakers to adopt a requirement that all individuals convicted of driving impaired, even first-time offenders, be required to use an ignition-interlock device. If the NTSB's recommendation becomes law, the stakes will be even higher for avoiding a drunk driving conviction since you'll potentially be at risk of a costly and embarrassing IID requirement if you are convicted even for a first-time offense.
Barclay Law LLC has offices in Birmingham, AL. Call 205-488-2797 for a free consultation.