The results of Friday’s DUI checkpoint turned up one arrest — about two weeks after a previous checkpoint didn’t have any drunken drivers pass through, according to California Highway Patrol officials.
“In my personal experience, in my opinion, it shows the effectiveness of patrolling,” CHP Officer Josh Greengard said Wednesday, in discussing the 19 DUI arrests made by officers and sheriff’s deputies who were on patrol over the weekend.
CHP officers manning Friday’s checkpoint impounded one car, cited five motorists for allegedly driving without a license and arrested one driver wanted on a $50,000 warrant.
“There are standards we have to abide by. We have to advertise (the location of the checkpoint),” he said, referring to alerting the public as to when and where the checkpoints will take place, as a condition of the legal guidelines that govern how checkpoints must be conducted.
Friday’s checkpoint began at 6:30 p.m. and wrapped up at 2:30 a.m. Saturday.
The official goal of the DUI checkpoint is to create awareness among the motoring public, to deter people from driving under the influence and to keep the streets safe for all, according to a news release issued by the CHP.
Although checkpoints tend to reduce the number of drinking drivers on the road, the CHP was ready to apprehend DUI drivers who fail to heed their warnings, according to officials. Even though arrest totals do not rise dramatically, officials say the psychological influence a checkpoint has on the motoring public is invaluable.
Sobriety checkpoints are conducted in accordance to the guidelines for checkpoint operations outlined in the Supreme Court decision, Ingersol vs. Palmer.
Traffic volume permitting, all vehicles are checked. If traffic volume becomes too heavy, vehicles to be checked are selected by a preset standard, such as every fifth or 10th vehicle, in order to assure objectivity.
On Aug. 16, no motorist was arrested for impaired driving during a DUI checkpoint carried out by the CHP, even though 400 drivers were stopped.
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