Mandatory Interlock Law Takes Effect
An interlock device is a device which attaches to your car ignition. You cannot start your car until you blow in the machine and return a zero reading for alcohol. For some years, drivers who are disqualified for a drink driving offence have had the option of serving some of their disqualification with an interlock device attached to their car.
Many people did not take up the option of having an interlock device because of the expense. The cost works out at about $50 per week, although it can be higher depending on the length of disqualification.
On 1 July 2018, a new law came into effect making interlock devices mandatory for certain drink driving offences. If you have two recent drink drive convictions within 4 years, or if your reading is high (over 800), the Judge must sentence you to have an interlock licence. You will be disqualified for 28 days and then ordered to apply for an interlock device. This will result in large costs over and above what you may be fined as a result of the offence.
While the Government has announced a partial subsidy for people caught by the law change, it is worth noting that the subsidy only applies for those on a low income (for example, a single person cannot earn more than $28,300 per year). Also, the subsidy will only be available for 15 months.
There are some exceptions to try and avoid the alcohol interlock regime.
If you are concerned about whether the interlock law may apply to you please contact us at Quay Legal for some advice.