After a drunk driving conviction, you may be faced with the reality of your crime each time you try to drive your car: your ignition interlock device. At first, you were probably vigilant about not drinking any alcohol if you thought there was a chance you’d have to drive. You may have opted for sodas while your friends celebrated happy hour, or you just planned to have a safe ride home so you could be part of the fun. Now that you’re used to your device and the initial shock of your ignition interlock requirement has worn off, you might wonder if you can slide under the radar with a non-alcoholic beer. You miss the taste, and your friends seem to think a non-alcoholic brew won’t set off your device. Should you take the risk?
No, not unless you want a violation of your ignition interlock requirement.
It is true that non-alcoholic beer is a safe alternative to regular beer in many situations. Your ignition interlock is not one of those cases, however, as the device is there to detect any amount of alcohol that you’ve consumed. Non-alcoholic beer still contains alcohol, albeit a smaller amount and even that could be a problem when you’re trying to remain compliant with your ignition interlock device requirement. The device could lock you out, or at the very least, it will log the evidence that you had a small amount of alcohol in your breath sample, much like it would with mouthwash. Only, with mouthwash, your next breath sample would be “clean” – the alcohol from a non-alcoholic beer still has to be metabolized from your body.
You don’t want to tempt fate, and that “near beer” is more trouble than it’s worth, especially when it comes to your ignition interlock requirement and your future freedom.