You’ve chosen to join the Ontario ignition interlock program in order to regain your driving privileges during your suspension. That’s a wise choice. You can keep driving and live a normal life as you fulfil your legal requirement. Being tempted to drive illegally will never be an issue, and best of all, you won’t have to worry about driving impaired – your vehicle won’t let you do it!
If you’re just starting out, you might be wondering how you’ll manage with your interlock device. It’s really not difficult at all. Here are the steps you’ll need to take:
- Contact your ignition interlock provider. They will inform you of the requirements, help you sort out the paperwork, and book your installation appointment.
- Go for installation and training. Visit your provider at the appointed time and have your device installed. Remember, you will need to have a licensed driver bring you to your installation appointment, as you’re not cleared to drive yet. At the appointment your provider will install and test your ignition interlock, instruct you in its operation, answer all your questions. Then you’re good to go!
- Go for regular monitoring and calibration. Every month you’ll need to bring your vehicle in to the provider to have the data from the device downloaded and sent to the authorities. They will also calibrate your device to make sure the readings are accurate.
- Complete the program and have the interlock removed. When your interlock term is up, you can have it removed. This will happen on the day of your final appointment. Your vehicle will be just as it was before the interlock was installed – no trace of it will remain, and your vehicle will operate as it did before.
Your final appointment must be within 2 days of the end date of your interlock period. If you have it removed within those 2 days beforehand, you are not allowed to drive the vehicle until the MTO has received notice of the completion, which can take a few days. So bring a licensed driver to the removal appointment as well.
That’s all it takes to get through the Ontario Ignition Interlock Program. Remember, though, that if you fail to fulfil these requirements – if you fail a breath test, or fail to take a running re-test, for example – your interlock period will be extended. So the more seriously you take the program, the faster and more easily you’ll get through it.