Ignition Interlock Devices in Maryland
The use of Ignition Interlock Devices is becoming more widespread in DUI/DWI convictions, as well as throughout the United States. These devices work in a way that is similar to breathalyzers. The devices are installed in vehicles whose owners are found by the MVA to have violated the Transportation Article. A Maryland ignition interlock lawyer can help explain if you face a mandated ignition interlock. To start a vehicle with this device installed, the driver must breathe into it. Any alcohol detected on the driver’s breath ensures that the vehicle will not start.
Maryland Ignition Interlock Devices also ask for random tests while the vehicle is being driven. This prevents a sober person from “tricking” the device, and starting the vehicle. Such action could potentially let an intoxicated person operate the car. If the driver doesn’t provide a sample of their breath, the vehicle doesn’t shut down; that might create a hazardous road situation. Instead, it records the refusal and sounds an alarm until the vehicle is turned off.
Program and Costs
You might be ordered to comply with an Ignition Interlock program in Maryland in order to keep your driving privileges. If so, you must pay for all costs associated with the system while it is installed in your vehicle. If you participate in the program, you must report to a service provider every month for calibration of the device. Each time that you do so, the device’s data logger is read. Information regarding the date, time, and alcohol level of each transaction is recorded. If you’re suspected of attempting to disable the device, this fact is reported to the MVA after each hearing. Random retest compliance data is also reported.
In order to prevent a “low start violation,” drivers with an Ignition Interlock device in Maryland have to start their vehicles 50 times in 30 days. If you will be starting your vehicle less than 50 times per month (because you are ill, or carpooling, for instance), the MVA requires you to notify them. You must do so in writing, stating that you will not be operating the vehicle. You must provide this notification prior to the instances, and give a valid and reasonable explanation.
Violations and Legal Representation
If you violate the terms of the Ignition Interlock Device program in Maryland, there are consequences. For instance, the installation period is increased by one month after each violation is recorded. Four violations gets a driver excluded from the program – and their license suspended or revoked.
If you’re considering participating in an Ignition Interlock Device program, or already participate, get an attorney to help you understand its benefits and restrictions. Such an attorney will be well versed in DUI and DWI procedures in the state of Maryland. This is the most appropriate way to comply with its requirements. Once you successfully complete the program, the device is removed, and you can drive independently on the road once again.