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Connecticut's ignition interlock device law for drunk drivers

When a Connecticut motorist is convicted of drunk driving, he or she must deal with the multiple penalties involved. When an individual is injured or killed by the negligence of a drunk driver, the drunk driver can be held liable for damages in a civil lawsuit. The drunk driver can also face fines and jail time, and their driving privileges may be taken away. As a condition of restoring the privilege to drive, a judge may require the installation of an ignition interlock device in the driver's vehicle.

Under Connecticut law, not every drunk driver is required to install an interlock device. There are certain requirements in order to qualify. Each device costs $175 and is paid for by the convicted drunk driver. On top of that, an additional $100 administrative fee is required. All vehicles owned by the person must have a device installed. Depending on the number of offenses, the driver may have to have the device installed for one, two or three years.

So how does the ignition interlock device work? The driver must blow into the device before the vehicle is able to start. If the device detects more than a negligible amount of alcohol, then the vehicle will not start. The device will be disabled for a period of time, so the driver cannot immediately try again. The lockout period increases for each unsuccessful attempt.

Drunk driving accidents can cause serious injury or even death. The goal of the ignition interlock device law is to keep intoxicated drivers off the roads, while allowing convicted drunk drivers to drive to their jobs and other obligations.

Source: FindLaw, "Ignition Interlock Devices," accessed March 29, 2015

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