Ignition Interlock in All Cars is The Future

In the near future, an ignition interlock device may be as standard a feature on a new car as windshield wipers and climate control. Toyota and Nissan have already announced they are exploring this technology as a standard safety feature in all vehicles. If Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) and the companies that stand to make millions in profits get their way, we may all have to blow into a device to start our cars in the near future, regardless of whether we have ever been convicted or even accused of drinking and driving.

More and more states, including Colorado, require the ignition of an ignition interlock device for purposes of reinstatement in order for a person with a driver’s license revocation to reinstate his or her driver’s license early after a DUI conviction or administrative revocation based on operating a vehicle with excessive alcohol content.

Currently in Colorado, an ignition interlock device is not require if a first-time offender is revoked for refusing to take a test or if he or she did not have a BAC at or over 0.17.  However, even with a lower BAC, a first-time offender is required to install and maintain an ignition interlock device for at least four months in order to reinstate his or her license early.

Currently, Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NTTSA) and other organizations are investigating technology that would come equipped in all vehicles to prevent an intoxicated driver from starting a vehicle.  These devices would not just be required for a person convicted of a driving and driving offense, but will come in all motor vehicles in the United States.

Some of the technology being investigated other than ignition interlock devices are:

Tissue spectroscopy, which uses infrared light to measure alcohol levels in tissue beneath the skin. With this device, a person places a forearm or a finger on a sensor pad, which can detect both a person’s identity and the levels of certain chemicals in the body, such as alcohol.

Ocular measurement technology, which consists of an indicator of alcohol or other drug impairment by recording and analyze a driver’s eye movements, including their percent of eye closure(PERCLOS), tunnel vision and frequent or extended glances away from the road.

Trandermal technology, which detects a person’s BAC based on his or her perspiration and used to estimate BAC.  This is similar to a SCRAM (Secure Continuous Alcohol Monitor), which is a device is strapped to an offender’s ankle while on probation to monitor the user. Technology currently in development can produce a device that is small enough to be worn on the wrist or even embedded in a vehicle’s steering wheel.

Ignition interlock devices are not just a thing of the future; many drivers in Colorado currently have these devices installed as part of a restricted driver’s license.  Experienced Denver DUI attorney Jay Tiftickjian will fight for the best possible result for each and every client facing a DUI charge in Colorado.  If you have been charged with a DUI in Denver, call Tiftickjian Law Firm, P.C. at (303) 991-5896 or 1-855-DUI-5280 for a consultation.

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