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Why is there a camera in your ignition interlock device?

On Behalf of | May 29, 2022 | Criminal Defense

Drivers convicted of a high blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) drunk driving offense or those with prior impaired driving convictions may need to install an ignition interlock device (IID) if they want to keep their license.

In recent years, Iowa has changed its requirements for IIDs. Specifically, the state now requires that the devices contain cameras. Why did the state change the rules that apply to IIDs?

Too many people tried to abuse the system

The point of installing an IID in your vehicle is to prevent you from starting the vehicle when you have too much alcohol in your bloodstream. If someone fails the test, they won’t be able to start their vehicle, and authorities will also receive information about their failed test.

People have used passengers as a means to bypass the IID in their vehicles. Some people would go so far as to have their own children perform the breath test and then drive with those minors in the vehicle so they can do the “rolling tests” that are required. Upgrading IID units to devices that include cameras helps ensure that every person performing a breath test is the driver subject to the IID requirement.

If the driver tries to have someone else perform the tests, the photo records of that attempt at manipulation could wind up affecting their eligibility for a restricted license and how quickly they get their normal license back.

Although performing breath tests when you start your car may be frustrating, it is a better solution than completely losing your driving privileges. Understanding the rules that govern IIDs and the other consequences of Iowa drunk driving charges can help you as you go through the justice system after an arrest.