Those convicted of DUIs in Chicago will have to install an ignition interlock device (IID) installed in their vehicle after an arrest.
1. What Is An IID?
An IID is a small machine which is connected to the steering column on a vehicle. A car that has an IID installed will not start unless the driver blows into the IID and is not intoxicated.
Basically, the device is a breathalyzer that controls whether or not a vehicle will start. Most IIDs are programmed so that the vehicle will not start if the driver blows over .03% BAC.
2. How Does An IID Work?
Once the driver blows into the device and starts the vehicle, it will ask for another sample within 5-10 minutes, and then the driver will have to give another sample about every 45 minutes after those initial tests.
Those with IIDs installed have to get them “calibrated” once a month. During the calibration, the IID company representative will download all of the reports from the device, including the photos taken and the results of the breath tests.
All of these results will be reported to the officer monitoring the driver. The IID cannot be manipulated. The cord connecting the device to the vehicle is short, so it cannot be used by someone in the backseat or passenger seat.
It requires the user to hum and breathe deeply while exhaling, ensuring that it is getting a sample from a person and not a machine. It also records any attempts at tampering or removal.
Many of the devices also have a camera that snaps a photo of the individual blowing into the device to make sure that it is actually the driver of the vehicle providing the sample, and that the machine is not being manipulated by a machine or other device.
3. Who Is Required To Get One?
In Illinois, anyone who is arrested and charged with a DUI offense is required to get an IID. First time offenders can expect to have an IID for a period of up to one year, while subsequent offenders may have one installed for 5 years or more.
Most of the time, those who have an IID are also on a suspended license, meaning they are only permitted to drive to particular places, such as drug and alcohol classes, work and school, and to and from probation appointments.
Those caught driving a vehicle without an IID while required to do so can have the restricted license revoked and face charges for probation violations.
4. What If The Driver Tries To Start The Vehicle After Consuming Alcohol?
Drivers who have IIDs installed will have someone monitoring the reports of the device; meaning that each time the IID is blown into, it is recorded and sent to the monitoring authority.
Usually, the person monitoring the reports is either a bond officer or a probation or parole officer. In addition, most modern IIDs also have a camera connected. When the driver blows into the vehicle with over a .03% (this is a standard percentage, the actual percentage may be different on a case-by-case basis), the vehicle does not start.
The device will indicate that the driver has exceeded the allowable limit. Depending on the company used for the IID, the vehicle will either be “locked out” (meaning the driver has to contact the company and pay a fee in order to get the vehicle to start again), or the driver can simply try again once they have become sober.
No matter what happens with the actual vehicle, the driver will have to answer for violations on the device to their monitoring officer.
If the driver is able to successfully start the vehicle, but their blood alcohol level increases (e.g., if they consume alcohol while driving), the device will warn the driver of the violation. It will not shut down while in motion.
5. What If The Person Arrested Does Not Have A Vehicle?
If an individual is charged with a DUI and is required to have an IID installed, but they do not have a vehicle, it may seem like they got lucky.
However, someone with an IID requirement cannot drive a vehicle without the device installed, or it counts as a probation violation and can result in additional charges against them.
Also, some judges may require more invasive monitoring devices, such as a SCRAM device, which is strapped to an individual’s ankle to monitor alcohol consumption, or an in-home device, which requires the person to provide 5 breath samples at various times of the day into a portable device.
Contact Abdallah Law Today
IIDs are not convenient. They are expensive and can be embarrassing for drivers. If you or a loved one is facing a DUI charge, contact Abdallah Law today at (312)-229-0008 for a free consultation so we can help you avoid being faced with an IID requirement.