Roberts Law Group PLLC

North Carolina Criminal Defense Attorneys

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Ignition Interlock For Every 1st Time DWI Conviction?

If the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has its way, everyone in the United States who is convicted of drunk driving will have to install an ignition interlock device on his or her car. The recommendation comes after a report by the NTSB that alcohol-impaired drivers are the leading cause of crashes across the U.S.

An ignition interlock device is not a mandatory portion of a first-time DWI sentence in North Carolina, although 17 other states have already implemented the NTSB's recommendation.

In North Carolina, an ignition interlock device (IID) is required if:

  • You were convicted of DWI and your BAC (blood-alcohol-concentration) was .15 or above
  • You were convicted of a second or subsequent DWI offense within seven years of your last impaired-driving conviction
  • You were convicted of habitual DWI
  • You were convicted of negligent homicide or vehicular homicide and alcohol was involved in the crash

IID systems are installed at the driver's expense. A driver must blow into the device in order to start his or her car as well as blow during rolling tests when the car is on. If you do not blow during a rolling test, the cars lights and horn will be turned on by the device and require a successful blow or a restart of the car (and successful blow to start the car) to turn them off.

If an IID is required as part of a DWI sentence, the typical timeframe is one year, starting from the end of the driver's license suspension period.

Source: Daily Tech, "NTSB Recommends Ignition Interlock for First-Time DWI Offenders," December 12, 2012

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