Convicted DUI offenders in AZ required to use interlock devices

Ignition interlock devices allow convicted DUI offenders to maintain certain driving privileges. However, there are some restrictions surrounding their use.

Drivers who are charged and convicted of drunk driving in Arizona may face harsh penalties, including jail time, fines and use of an ignition interlock device. According to Mothers Against Drunk Driving, Arizona is one of 25 states that require all convicted DUI offenders to use ignition interlock devices on their vehicles. Although these machines can be costly to install and maintain, they allow DUI offenders the ability to keep their driving privileges.

Ignition interlock basics

Ignition interlock devices have been shown to reduce the number of drunk drivers who commit repeat offenses, as reported by MADD. Once the small machine is installed in a vehicle's ignition system, the driver must blow a breath sample into a tube that is connected to the dashboard monitor. According to TechHive, the device screens the breath sample for the presence of alcohol and will not allow the car to start if the driver's blood alcohol content level is at or above 0.02 percent.

In addition to providing an initial breath sample, the device will alert the motorist to submit additional breath samples periodically during the drive. The car will sound an alarm until the driver pulls over and turns off his or her car if the machine records a BAC level that is over the preset limit or if the driver does not comply with the rolling retest.

Required IID maintenance

All of the data including startup attempts, BAC levels, rolling retests and vehicle lock outs, is recorded within the device. This information is then transferred to officials during each maintenance appointment. According to the Arizona Department of Transportation, ignition interlock devices must be brought in for a maintenance appointment every month for the initial three months of the driver's restricted driving period. The machines are calibrated and technicians ensure that they are working correctly.

Understanding driver restrictions

Offenders who have an IID installed in their vehicles are still restricted as to where they are able to drive. Offenders are able to drive at certain times, depending on their specific work and school schedules, according to AzDOT. They are also able to drive to doctor's appointments, IID maintenance appointments, probation officer meetings and to drug or alcohol treatment programs.

Contact an attorney

A DUI can have major consequences and affect many areas of your life. With a DUI on your record, it can be difficult to obtain a professional license, find a job in certain industries or even qualify for loans. If you have been charged with a DUI, you may want to speak with a defense attorney regarding your rights and options. A criminal lawyer in Arizona may be able to assist you in developing a case.