Driving under the influence (DUI) charges are common criminal offenses in South Carolina. Hundreds of people every month get pulled over for drunk driving or arrested at the scene of a crash for having too much alcohol in their bloodstream.
If they plead guilty to avoid going to court or get convicted in criminal proceedings, the penalties they face will include fines and jail time, as well as the suspension of their license. South Carolina has loosened its once strict license suspension rules as it expanded its ignition interlock device (IID) program.
Drivers with a recent DUI offense may have to install an IID in their vehicles and complete the South Carolina IID program in order to fully regain their driving privileges.
You must install an IID after most DUI offenses
There are two categories of drivers who will likely be subject to IID requirements after a DUI conviction in South Carolina. Sometimes, even a first DUI offense will lead to an IID in your vehicle.
First-time offenders with a blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.15% or higher will likely have to install an IID in their vehicles. Repeat offenders with prior DUIs on their records will also be subject to installation requirements. Your driving history and BAC at the time of your arrest will determine how long you have to maintain the IID in your vehicle.
The devices in South Carolina have cameras installed to ensure people cannot trick the testing system, and there are penalties assessed against those who tamper with the IID in their vehicles.
Is an IID a hindrance or a help?
Many drivers begrudge the obligation to install an IID in their vehicles, as they don’t recognize the benefits they derive from this arrangement. The IID program has replaced strict, mandatory license suspension rules.
Rather than losing your license, there are simply limitations on your driving privileges. You will have a proven history of driving sober by the end of the program, which is in your favor. Although there are costs involved with the installation and maintenance of an IID, those expenses are typically far lower than what you would pay to use a ride share service to get to work every day.
Learning more about how South Carolina penalizes DUI charges can help those recently arrested decide their next step.