What is SC’s ignition interlock program?

| Jun 19, 2020 | DUI

All 50 states have ignition interlock requirements associated with DUI offenses, but each state applies these laws differently. It is important to understand South Carolina’s specific ignition interlock program.

South Carolina has a very strict ignition interlock program. Failure to enroll in an ignition interlock program may result in your license being indefinitely suspended. According to the South Carolina Department of Probation, Parole and Pardon Services, if the courts convict you of DUI on the first offense where your blood alcohol level was above .15% or if you are a repeated DUI offender, you must install an ignition interlock device.

What is an ignition interlock device?

An ignition interlock device is a personal breathalyzer machine that a third party company installs in your vehicle. When you wish to start your vehicle, you will need to breathe into the device to prove that there is no alcohol on your breath. Once you start the vehicle, you will need to breathe into the device at predetermined intervals to prove that you have not consumed alcohol since starting the car.

How long must I have an ignition interlock device installed?

This depends on the nature of your offense. If you are a first-time offender who had a blood alcohol level of above .15%, you must have an ignition interlock device for a minimum of six months. For a second time offense, the minimum is two years. For a third offense, the minimum is three years. If you receive a DUI conviction for the fourth time, you must have an ignition interlock device in your car for the rest of your life.