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The alcohol ignition interlock program will apply to drivers convicted on or after August 6, 2010 for the following offences:

  • a drink driving offence for a blood alcohol concentration of 0.15 or more;
  • driving under the influence of liquor;
  • refusal to provide a breath/blood sample for analysis;
  • dangerous driving while under the influence of alcohol; or
  • two or more drink driving offences within five years.

An alcohol ignition interlock is a breath testing device that is installed to the vehicle’s ignition so that before it starts the driver would have to breathe into the device to see if he is alcohol free. The vehicle will only start if the driver is alcohol free. Failing the breath test many times will lock the ignition and the driver has to contact his interlock provider to unlock it which would mean having to pay fees.

Having been convicted of any of the above enumerated drink driving offences, the driver can only drive after the end of his disqualification and must apply for a new license with an ‘I’ (for interlock) on it. The program is for a maximum of two years.

The driver must have his interlock device installed by a provider authorized by the Queensland government otherwise it will not be valid. Furthermore, the driver must never drive another vehicle that is without an alcohol interlock for he may be penalized. There are others who forego having an interlock device installed in their vehicle because it can be quite expensive but this means that they must not drive for 2 years.

There are limited exceptions to the requirement of alcohol ignition interlock installation. The exceptions are the following drivers who:

  • have medical conditions that prevent them from breathing the required volume of breath;
  • live outside a 150 km radius from the nearest interlock provider;
  • reside in an island that does not have an interlock provider and is not connected by bridge to the mainland; or
  • have justifying circumstances like if the employer of the vehicle being driven does not permit the interlock installation. 

The driver might be able to exit the program earlier than 2 years if he has complied with the following conditions for at least 12 months:

  • he has a Queensland ‘I’ driver’s license;
  • interlock has been installed in his vehicle; and
  • vehicle details have been given to the interlock provider.

Disclaimer : This article is just a summary of the subject matter being discussed and should not be regarded as a comprehensive legal advice for you to defend yourself alone. If you are charged with criminal offences, it is recommended that you seek legal assistance from criminal lawyers.

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