As a condition of getting your driver’s license restored after having been suspended, the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) might require that you install an ignition interlock device in your car. This is also known as an IID. If you find yourself in this situation, you can learn more about how to get an IID in Connecticut on this page.
What is an IID?
The purpose of an IID is to ensure that the driver of the vehicle cannot operate the vehicle when their breath as registered by the device is higher than the state limit. An IID is a device that you blow into and it reads your Blood Alcohol Content (BAC). If the BAC exceeds a certain level, the car won’t start. For those 21 and over in their personal vehicles (in Connecticut) that means a BAC of .08% or higher.
Even though this might be a requirement to have installed in your vehicle, the law does not require a specific brand. As with other products, you can purchase or lease this equipment from many different companies that provide this service.
Connecticut IID Vendors
Here is a list of vendors approved in Connecticut:
Ruane Attorneys recommends Sensolock if you need to have an IID installed, but you can use any of the companies listed above. To find out pricing, please visit the company website and enter your specific information and the vendor will follow up with you about pricing and installation locations.
How Does the Device Work?
To start the car, the operator of the vehicle must blow into the device, typically for a few seconds. A person must blow into the device long enough for the IID to register your BAC. If the BAC is under .08%, the vehicle will start. If the BAC is over .08%, the vehicle will not start. It is also important to note that several failed attempts (depending on device) will lock the device and you will have to wait some time before attempting to start the vehicle again.
Once the vehicle is started, the device will randomly require what is called “random rolling tests” (RRT). What this means is that every now and then while the vehicle is in operation, the device will prompt the driver to pull over and give a breath sample. Typically, if the driver ignores this retest protocol the device will sound the horn and cause the lights to blink similar to the car alarm being activated until the vehicle is turned off and the test is administered. If this retest is failed, the car will be inoperable until a successful breath sample is taken.
Having the device in your car is not enough to satisfy the IID requirement imposed by the Department of Motor Vehicles. The operator is responsible to have the device calibrated every 30 days. The operator is also responsible for any fees associated with this. Depending on if the device is purchased or leased these fees may be part of the leasing fee or purchase price. Check with the chosen vendor on these fees when getting price quotes. These calibrations are NOT optional and are required by the state. When the device is recalibrated, the facility calibrating it notifies the DMV that it has done so. Failure for this process to occur will result in a new license suspension.
Hiding the Device
Having an IID device in your car is not fun and it also can be discouraging to have others see you use it. Although there is not one great disguise for this device, many installers as well as companies online make camouflaged coverings that typically look like a drink cup to hide the device in a cup holder. If you are embarrassed to have an IID in your vehicle, you can look into getting someone to hide it from plain view.
Whether you have questions about the underlying DUI charge, or how to navigate the process of getting an IID and maintaining it, Ruane Attorneys is here to help. Give our office a call for a free consultation regarding your DUI case.