A new bill, recently passed by the California State Senate, seeks to increase the penalties for all drivers convicted of a DUI by enforcing the installment of an interlock device. Currently being piloted in four counties – Alameda, Tulare, Los Angeles, and Sacramento – the measure is now being sent to the Assembly for consideration. If passed, this new law could impact the lives and driving rights of more than 200,000 drivers each and every year.
What Is an Interlock Device?
An ignition interlock device (IID) is a lot like a breathalyzer test, but it is connected to the ignition of your vehicle. Before you can start your car, you have to blow into the mouthpiece. If the device detects a blood alcohol concentration above the preprogrammed limit, the ignition remains disabled and you are unable to start your car. The device also requires that you periodically complete what is known as a “running retest” while driving. This requires that you blow into the device at random intervals while driving. If you fail the running retest, the device will not shut off the engine, but it will record the event and cause your vehicle to alert the authorities.
Possibly a One-Year Minimum for IIDs
The bill, which passed by a unanimous vote through the Senate, could potentially require that those convicted of a DUI have an IID installed for a one-year minimum. However, that time may be extended, depending upon the circumstances of the offender’s arrest and previous criminal record. During that time, the driver would be held responsible for a monitoring and calibration fee (most states average at about $60 to $80 per month). Drivers would also be responsible for the cost of installation of the IID, which could cost anywhere from $70 to $150.
Arrested for a DUI? Our Aggressive Criminal Defense Lawyers Can Protect Your Right to Drive
If you have recently been arrested for a DUI, do not simply assume you have to plead guilty and accept the consequences. Testing inaccuracies or improperly implemented procedures could provide our aggressive San Jose, California DUI defense lawyers the leverage they need to have your case dismissed. If your charges cannot be thrown out, we can work to mitigate the penalties to lessen the impact a DUI charge will have on your life. To discuss your case, and how we can help, call us at (408) 898-9770 and schedule a free initial consultation today.