Arkansas Ignition Interlock Laws
Driving while impaired is a major health issue in our country today. With over 1,300 fatalities on our highways each year due to alcohol impaired driving, it is no wonder that legislatures and law enforcement agencies across the country are making a concerted effort to curtail the amount of impaired drivers on our nation’s highways.
Arkansas is no stranger to the problems impaired drivers can cause. With more than 8.800 DWI arrests in the state in a given year, the state has made it a point to seek out and punish inebriated drivers throughout the state. In an effort to curtail this behavior, an Arkansas driver will have just SEVEN DAYS after their Arkansas drunk driving arrest to request a hearing with Arkansas Department of Finance & Administration Office of Motor Vehicle. If they don’t make this request in a timely manner, their driving privileges will be promptly suspended.
A person arrested for a first offense DWI are not entitled to a restricted permit but are allowed an ignition interlock restricted license. In addition to any other sanction for a DWI offense, the may for a first or second offense and must, for a third or subsequent offense, if the offender can afford it, require only operating a motor vehicle equipped with an ignition interlock device. This requirement continues for up to 1 year after the person’s license is no longer suspended or revoked. If restricted licenses have been issued, the required use of an ignition interlock device “shall be for at least the remaining time period of the original suspension” period.
Persons arrested for operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated by the use of a controlled substance or refusal to submit to testing are ineligible for an ignition interlock restricted driving permit.
It is interesting to note that one of the variables in determining the use of an Ignition Interlock Device is the ability of the driver to afford it. Those drivers seeking restricted licenses have few other options, however. Smart Start vehicle ignition interlock breath-testing devices measure a vehicle operator’s BAC, and will prevent operation of the vehicle if more than a minimal amount of alcohol is detected (i.e. BAC level of .02). Arkansas DUI offenders will usually be required to pay the costs of installation, rental, and maintenance of an ignition interlock device.
When an Arkansas DWI offender installs an ignition interlock device on his or her vehicle, they are able to retain their legal driving status as a provisional driver. This enables them to maintain employment, attend school, complete substance abuse treatment and take care of their responsibilities while adhering to the requirements of the Arkansas DUI courts. This is particularly important in rural areas where offenders may not have access to public transportation alternatives.
Smart Start of Arkansas is an approved renter and installer of Ignition Interlock Devices in the sate. Whether you are in Little Rock, Fayetteville or Pine Bluff we have installation centers near you ready to help you navigate the many requirements of DWI courts and Motor Vehicle Departments. Call us today at 800-880-3394 or fill out our online appointment form to discuss your requirements and things like costs and logistics and we can help get you on the road in no time! Smart Start of Arkansas are here to help you get your life back on track, call us today!