What Is an Ignition Interlock Device?

If you have been arrested and charged with a drunk driving offense in Pennsylvania, you will want to understand the consequences you may face if you are ultimately convicted. In addition to financial penalties and incarceration, you may be required to install an ignition interlock device into your vehicle. An IID is considered more of a preventative consequence than a punitive one. The goal of an IID is to proactively guard against any repeat offenses.

As explained by ignitioninterlockdevice.org, there are multiple components to an IID. One of these is a breath sample collection device. This is often mounted on your vehicle’s dashboard but then held by you when you need to breathe into it for testing purposes. You must do this every time you wish to start your vehicle. This device measures your blood alcohol level.

There is also an electronic device that may be installed in your glove box and then wired directly to your ignition. When you provide a breath sample, a computer chip in the collection device sends the results to the glove box unit. Depending upon your BAC level, your vehicle’s ignition will be unlocked or will remain locked. The latter happens if your test indicates some impairment.

Even if you have passed a test and been able to start your vehicle, you may expect to take additional breath tests at random times during your trip. The IID system will signal to you when this is required. Failure to comply with the rolling test request will result in an alarm sounding until you stop the vehicle and take the test. This information is not intended to provide legal advice but general information about ignition interlock devices in Philadelphia.