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This article was written by Michelle Makela - Legal Practice Director

Michelle has over 15 years experience in the legal industry, working across commercial litigation, criminal law, family law and estate planning.  Michelle has been involved in all practice areas of the firm and in her personal practice has had experience in litigation at all levels (state and federal industrial tribunals, the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, the Federal Court, Federal...

Alcohol Ignition Interlock

In Queensland, a person who has been convicted of certain drink drive and traffic offences for which their licence was disqualified, must have an Alcohol Ignition Interlock fitted to their nominated vehicle for a period of 12 months after they get their licence back.

A person who is subject to this requirement is only permitted to drive their nominated vehicle and only while the Alcohol Ignition Interlock is fitted and operational throughout that 12-month period.

What is an Alcohol Ignition Interlock?

According to section 91I of the Transport Operations (Road Use Management) Act 1995, an Alcohol Ignition Interlock is: “a device that, when fitted to a motor vehicle, prevents the vehicle from being started unless the device is provided with a specimen of a person’s breath containing either no alcohol or less than a particular concentration of alcohol”.

The Alcohol Ignition Interlock regime in Queensland operates automatically as a matter of law, no specific order is required from a court, and there is only a very limited discretion for a court to exempt a person from the requirement.

People who are made subject to an Alcohol Ignition Interlock requirement are obliged to cover all the costs associated with the Interlock, for example fees for leasing and maintaining the device. Some financial assistance is available to people who are unable to meet the full cost themselves.

Which offences attract an automatic Interlock requirement?

All of the following offences, if they resulted in a licence disqualification, will attract an automatic Interlock condition when an offender gets their licence back:

  • High-range drink driving;
  • Failure to provide specimen of blood or breath;
  • Repeat drink driving (of any level);
  • Dangerous driving while intoxicated.

Are there any exemptions?

Yes, but only where very strict requirements are met.

What do I need to prove to get an exemption?

To be exempt a person must prove that:

  • The nearest Interlock installation business to the persons home is not reasonably accessible by motor vehicle; or
  • They have a medical condition preventing them from providing a big enough sample of breath.

For advice or representation in any legal matter, please contact Armstrong Legal.

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