In Kansas, first-time and repeat DUI offenders can be court-ordered to have an ignition interlock device installed into their vehicle to prevent future drunk driving.
What Is an Ignition Interlock Device (IID)?
An ignition interlock device (IID) is a handheld breathalyzer connected to your vehicle’s ignition. It prevents the car from starting if the driver has been drinking alcohol. They may also be called breath alcohol ignition interlock devices (BAID) or car breathalyzers.
How Does an Ignition Interlock Work?
The driver is required to breathe into the ignition interlock device’s mouthpiece for a specific amount of time before starting the vehicle. The car breathalyzer tests the breath sample to measure the driver’s breath alcohol concentration (BrAC). If it falls below the limit programmed into the device, the vehicle can be started.
What Happens if I Fail an Interlock Breathalyzer?
Two types of breath tests must be passed: The initial breathalyzer before you start the ignition and the rolling retests that are completed while you’re driving. Failing one of these tests will keep you from driving for a set period of time, but keep in mind that the IID records your BrAC level for every successful and failed test. Some even have cameras and GPS that record photos and locations of the person taking the test. Repeated test failures can have hefty penalties, including…
- Jail time
- Revoking your driver’s license
Initial Breath Test
If the initial breathalyzer is failed, the vehicle will not start for a specified lockout period, which varies by state. After the lockout period, another sample may be provided.
The purpose of a rolling retest is to prevent a driver from having someone else breathe into their IID so the car will start. As you’re driving, you must periodically submit a breath sample. If the retest fails or is not completed within the required time, it will be logged into the IID, and the driver will be notified. In some cases, failing a rolling retest may require the car to be pulled over and turned off until a clean sample is provided.
Will the Car Breathalyzer Drain My Vehicle’s Battery?
While the ignition interlock device does draw power from the car itself, it doesn’t draw so much power that it would drain your car’s battery.
How Long Will I Have to Use an Ignition Interlock Device?
The Kansas Department of Revenue has provided an alcohol action chart that lists the driver’s license suspension time, the ignition interlock time, and fees that may be assessed for different DUI or DWI offenses. If you receive an IID restriction, the court order will specify how long the ignition interlock device must be used in your case.
How is an IID Installed, Monitored, and Removed?
Once an IID restriction is issued, an installation appointment will need to be made at a service center. Training on the Kansas Ignition Interlock Program requirements and how to use the device will be provided after the device is installed on the vehicle.
Ignition interlock devices are monitored and calibrated regularly, and event data is uploaded for future review. The monitoring authority, which could be a probation or parole officer or the court, will receive logs of each failed and successful car breathalyzer test.
A removal appointment can be scheduled after the court order is issued to remove the IID restriction.
Kansas Ignition Interlock Program
Here in Kansas, the ignition interlock program is regulated by the Kansas Department of Revenue and the Kansas Highway Patrol. You can find frequently asked questions on KHP website.