Planning to toss back a few this holiday season and get behind the wheel?
The Garden Grove PD will be waiting for you.
Members of the police department’s Traffic Unit will be conducting a DUI/Driver License Checkpoint on Friday, Dec. 12, and Friday, Dec. 19 between 9 p.m. and 3 a.m.
“The deterrent effect of DUI checkpoints is a proven resource in reducing the number of persons killed and injured in alcohol- or drug-involved crashes,” the Garden Grove PD said in a news release.
“Research shows that crashes involving an impaired driver can be reduced by up to 20 percent when well-publicized DUI checkpoints and proactive DUI patrols are conducted routinely,” the release said.
In California, impaired drivers accounted for 802 deaths in 2012. Nationally, the latest data shows nearly 10,000 were killed by an impaired driver.
“Over the course of the past three years, DUI collisions have claimed nine lives and resulted in 121 injury crashes, harming 181 of our friends and neighbors,” said Sgt. James Fischer.
Garden Grove PD officers will be looking for signs of alcohol and/or drug impairment with officers checking drivers for proper licensing, a process that will delay motorists only momentarily.
When possible, specially trained officers will be available to evaluate those suspected of drug-impaired driving.
Recent statistics reveal that 30 percent of drivers in fatal crashes had one or more drugs in their systems. A study of active drivers showed more tested positive for drugs that may impair driving (14 percent) than did for alcohol (7.3 percent).
Of the drugs, marijuana was most prevalent, at 7.4 percent — slightly more than alcohol.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, checkpoints have provided the most effective documented results of any of DUI enforcement strategy, while also yielding considerable cost savings of $6 for every $1 spent.
Nearly 90 percent of California drivers approve of DUI checkpoints, which are placed in locations based on collision statistics and frequency of DUI arrests.
Drivers caught driving impaired can expect jail time, fines, fees, DUI classes and other expenses that can exceed $10,000 — not to mention the embarrassment when friends and family find out, as the news release points out.
Funding for the checkpoints comes from a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, reminding everyone to ‘Report Drunk Driver – Call 9-1-1.’