7000 Using Interlock Devices for Illinois DUI

At least 7000 motorists in the state of Illinois have been required to install ignition interlock devices in their vehicles. A law which took effect January 1, 2009 requires all motorists convicted of driving under the influence in Illinois to install the breath-testing devices if they wish to continue driving. According to the Secretary of State’s office, another 5000 drivers could install the devices by the end of the year.

The interlocks are required as a condition for return of driving privileges and are installed for 6 to 12 months, the length of time a license is typically suspended for first offense IL DUI. Drivers have the option of not installing the devices though they would be prohibited from operating a vehicle during the suspension period.

The offender pays for the installation and a monthly fee to maintain the equipment. The cost, and perhaps social stigma, are influential in the decision to opt out of use of the devices. As many as 40,000 are charged with Illinois DUI in an average year, most of them first time offenders.

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