What is an ignition interlock device?

People in South Carolina who have been arrested for suspected drunk driving will need to learn quickly the laws and penalties that may apply to them. This will be important as they move through the defense process. As explained by the South Carolina Department of Probation, Parole and Pardon Services, one of the consequences for drivers who are convicted of some driving under the influence charges is the required use of an ignition interlock device.

An IID involves both a handheld breath test unit and electronic components that must be hardwired into a vehicle's system. Together, these parts keep a lock on a vehicle's ignition until a driver has successfully passed a breath test. A law was enacted in late 2014 that required the use of IIDs even for some people with only a first driving under the influence offense. In addition, these units must come with cameras to visually prove that the person taking the test is actually the driver of the vehicle.

Intoxalock is one of the different manufacturers and suppliers of ignition interlock devices. The company explains that even once a driver has passed an initial breath test and a vehicle is able to be started, subsequent tests will be required during an active trip of driving. This can put people in difficult situations as it may not always be possible to pull over to take these tests yet the growing awareness of the danger of distracted driving understandably may make them nervous about taking a test while driving.

When taking a test, a person must manually hold the breath collection unit and pay attention to the visual instructions on the unit, all of which could distracted someone from driving safely.

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