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When must a motorist use an ignition interlock device?

Virginia's drunk driving laws are very strict and have significant penalties. In addition to fines, the loss of one's driver's license and possible jail time, a person convicted of DUI will need to have an ignition interlock device installed on all vehicles they drive, except for employer-owned vehicles used only for job purposes, as long as the motorist is not self-employed. This is true even if it is a person's first offense.

An ignition interlock device is a device that the motorist must blow into, like a Breathalyzer, to determine the motorist's blood alcohol content. If the motorist's BAC is above 0.02 percent, the motorist's vehicle will not start. Motorists must also submit to rolling retests while driving. If the motorist's BAC is above 0.02 percent during a rolling retest or if a motorist does not submit to a rolling retest when they are supposed to, the vehicle's horn will honk, and its headlights will flash. The motorist's BAC at the time they try to start the car and at the time they submit to a rolling retest must be logged electronically.

The device must be installed for at least six months. It may be removed once the period in which the motorist's license suspension has ended if the motorist has had no alcohol-related violations. Motorists must also participate in an alcohol safety program during the time the device was installed on their vehicle.

As this shows, a single DUI can result in penalties that can significantly affect a person's everyday life. Therefore, they should take all steps necessary to wage a strong defense against drunk driving charges.

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Sevila, Saunders, Huddleston & White
30 North King Street
Leesburg, VA 20176

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