The Technology

Ignition interlock devices utilize a combination of same technology found in Breathalyzer devices and car alarms. A Breathalyzer is used to detect the level of alcohol present in a person’s bloodstream. A car alarm utilizes an ignition kill system to prevent an intruder from starting your vehicle. Ignition Interlock devices merge these two technologies together to prevent intoxicated persons from starting their vehicles.

The technology for ignition interlocks has come a long way since their introduction. There are now safeguards present to prevent: false positives, false negatives, tampering and another person from giving the breath alcohol sample. All ignition interlock systems keep a running log of activity so accurate reports can be delivered to your court appointed monitoring officers. Many of the new models take a digital photo of the breath alcohol sampling process to ensure that the person using the device is in fact the driver.

Ignition Interlock devices keep a record of the activity on the device and the interlocked vehicle's electrical system. The state requires that you bring your vehicle back to the installation location every 30 to 60 days after the installation, so that the device is checked and a report is sent to the state, or, the record, or log, is printed out or downloaded each time the device's sensors are calibrated, commonly at 30, 60, or 90-day intervals. Authorities may require periodic review of the log. If violations are detected, then additional sanctions can be implemented.

After the completion of the term, take your vehicle back to have the device removed (typically at no cost). You may continue to drive with your current drivers license because the restriction will no longer apply, or you may have a new license issued to you by your state’s Department of Motor Vehicles.