Gilroy Police to conduct DUI checkpoint May 24

Gilroy Police will host a DUI and driver’s license checkpoint at an undisclosed location within the city limits the evening of May 24.

“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,” reads a press release from the Gilroy Police Department. “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.”

At the May 24 checkpoint, officers will look for signs of alcohol and/or drug impairment among motorists. Officers will also be checking drivers for proper license and registration. If possible, specially trained officers will be available to evaluate drivers suspected of drug-impaired driving, police said.

In California, driving under the influence resulted in 802 deaths in 2012, reads the press release. Statistics further reveal that 30 percent of drivers in fatal accidents had one or more drugs in their systems. A recent study of active drivers found that more motorists tested positive for impairing drugs (14 percent) than did for alcohol (7.3 percent).

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), DUI checkpoints have provided the most effective documented results of any of the DUI enforcement strategies, while also yielding cost savings of $6 for every $1 spent, the Gilroy Police press release adds. Nearly 90 percent of California drivers approve of DUI checkpoints.

DUI Checkpoints are placed in locations based on collision statistics and frequency of DUI arrests, affording the greatest opportunity for achieving drunk and drugged driving deterrence, police added. Locations are chosen with safety considerations for the officers and the public.

Motorists caught driving impaired can expect the impact of a DUI arrest to include jail time, fines, fees, DUI classes and other expenses that can exceed $10,000, the press release said.

Funding for the May 24 checkpoint is provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the NHTSA.

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