Ignition interlock devices are used on motor vehicles to indicate whether or not a driver has consumed alcohol. A breath sample is required to start the car, and additional breath samples must be administered while driving to ensure the operator has not been drinking.
This personalized breathalyzer detector is included in the sentencing of many individuals charged with Driving While Under the Influence (DUI) or Driving While Ability Impaired (DWAI). According to the Colorado Department of Revenue Division of Motor Vehicles, your breath sample submitted to the ignition interlock device must indicate a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) less than 0.15 or the device will inhibit the car’s ignition and not allow you to drive.
Colorado Interlocks & the DMV
If you are sentenced by the court to install an ignition interlock system, the DMV will be notified. In the event you are pulled over for a traffic violation, your driving record will show that you are required by law to have the ignition breathalyzer unit until your probation is completed.
DUI License Reinstatement in Colorado
If you receive a DUI, following the charges, your license will be suspended or revoked and you will need to have your Colorado driver’s license reinstated. For optimal results, begin your reinstatement process several weeks before you are completely eligible. Processing documentation, including your Application for Reinstatement is completed through the mail.
Luckily for drivers with an ignition interlock device, many are eligible to reinstate their license after only one month of having a suspended license. When determining the length of revocation, each driver is assessed by age and for their BAC level while driving under the influence of alcohol. A BAC of 0.08 or greater is significant in the DUI sentencing process. The court also takes into consideration if there was an accident, any harm, or damage due to the DUI or DWAI when scheduling fines and punishment.
An application fee may apply when reinstating your license and you will receive a “Letter of Clearance” once all your paperwork has been successfully submitted and processed. In Colorado, some DUI cases require individuals to obtain a new driver’s license verses reinstating their previous license. A new Colorado driver’s license would involve taking the written exam, a road test, as well as a DMV eye test. You defense attorney will help you manage your court hearing and procedures that determines your DUI consequences.
How Much Do Ignition Interlock Devices Cost?
If you are sentenced to installing a motor vehicle ignition interlock device in Denver or anywhere in Colorado, you are required to lease the system from an authorized provider. Installation fees vary from car to car, but leasing agreements are usually less than $3 per day, ranging from $70 to $90 a month.
Once you complete your program, a removal fee of $50 to $100 may apply. Check with your case manager or ignition interlock device provider to see if you qualify for financial assistance, free, or discounted installation or removal fees.
Additional Important Information About Interlocks
Be informed about what is expected of you while an ignition device is attached to your car or motor vehicle (note: ignition interlock devices are not suitable to be installed on motorcycles).
Don’t Falsify Breath Samples
It is important to know that no one but you (not even a valet) can provide the breath sample if you are to be driving the car. If someone falsifies a breathalyzer sample, legal consequences can be applied to both you and the person who illegally submitted the breath test.
Triggers for False Positives
Certain mouthwashes have been known to activate the device. Wait for mouthwash to dissipate or rinse mouth with water before you start the car. Hand sanitizers containing potent amount of alcohol, some air fresheners, as well as fuel or gasoline vapors can also register a false positive on your ignition interlock system. Be aware of what might trigger your device. In most cases, you will have a second chance to start your vehicle, but you could get locked out from starting your car.
Best to Refrain or Wait
If you consumed alcohol at night you may still have a high enough BAC reading to fail the ignition’s test. Overall, individuals with ignition interlock devices are recommended to refrain from drinking, vaping, and even smoking during their probation period.
Approved Colorado Interlock Providers
If you need to have an ignition interlock system for your vehicle during your DUI probation period, you must go through a qualified provider. The following Colorado interlock companies are approved to install this device in the state:
- Guardian: 800-499-0994 www.gardianinterlock.com
- Intoxalock: 844-611-3710 www.intoxalock
- 1 A Smart Start: 866-348-4294 www.smartstartinc.com/Colorado
- A Lifesafer of CO 800-475-5490 www.lifesafer.com
Ignition Interlock Installation Device Service in Colorado
Ignition interlock systems need to be serviced by the company providing the device every 30 to 60 days. A reading of your breathalyzer will be taken and submitted to the authorities overseeing your case. At the time of your monitoring appointment, your service provider will also do an inspection of the ignition device to ensure it is working properly and make any adjustments needed.
Seek Legal Help
When it comes to the law, it’s best to have a professional on your side. Whether you are a first time DUI offender or a repeat offender, having a criminal defense lawyer at your side is essential to navigating your legal needs, and can be a real lifesaver. Dedicated and knowledgeable legal representation can make a difference in the outcome of your hearing. M. Colin Bresee offers free consultations to prospective clients and wants to hear from you. If you need legal help concerning a DUI, schedule an appointment today.