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What is an ignition interlock device ‘lockout’?

On Behalf of | Jan 20, 2015 | Drunk Driving Charges |

Regular readers of our blog undoubtedly know that in Colorado, ignition interlock devices are part of the state’s DUI prevention and punishment efforts. An ignition interlock is a type of breathalyzer device installed at your expense in your vehicle.

Before starting your car, you must blow into the device, which tests your breath for alcohol content. If the device detects a certain level of alcohol, it prevents your vehicle from starting and being driven. The period in which the device prevents your vehicle from being started is known as a “lockout.”

According to a manufacturer of the devices, the lockout following an initial detection of alcohol lasts just a few minutes, after which you can take another breath test and start the vehicle, if you pass.

However, in Colorado, the law states that if you have three lockouts over a period of a year, you can be required to have the interlock installed in your vehicle for up to another year. By law, the state says on a Department of Revenue web page, “a lockout is defined as any instance where alcohol is detected at or above 0.025 and prevents the vehicle from starting.”

If you have three lockouts, you can request a hearing at the DMV. Your ignition interlock requirement won’t be extended if you promptly request a hearing and completely comply with the hearing officer’s decision in the matter.

If you don’t request a hearing, expect the extension of the ignition interlock device requirement.

If you face an extension of an interlock ignition requirement, hearings or other DUI-related matters, discuss the facts of your case with an attorney experienced in DUI defense in court and in DMV hearings.