May 25 set for CHP Sobriety Checkpoint

Submitted by Adriaan Garcia, CHP Fort Tejon Area Office

The Fort Tejon Area Office of the California Highway Patrol will conduct a DUI and drivers license checkpoint on May 25, 4-10 p.m., somewhere within the unincorporated area of Kern County.

DUI checkpoints have proved effective in reducing  the number of persons killed and injured in alcohol or drug involved crashes. CHP research shows that crashes involving alcohol drop by an average of 20% when well-publicized checkpoints are conducted often enough.

Officers will be contacting drivers passing through the checkpoint for signs of alcohol and drug impairment. They will also check drivers for proper licensing and will strive to delay motorists only momentarily.

When possible, specially trained officers will be available to evaluate those suspected of drug-impaired driving.  Drivers caught driving while impaired (‘under the influence’) can expect jail, license suspension and insurance increases, as well as fines, fees, DUI classes and other expenses that can exceed $10,000.

In 2011, nearly 10,000 people were killed nationally in motor vehicle traffic crashes that involved at least one driver or motorcycle rider with a blood alcohol concentration of .08% or higher. In California, this deadly crime led to 774 deaths because someone failed to designate a sober driver.

“Over the past three years, DUI collisions claimed 2 lives and resulted in 33 injury crashes, harming 46 of our friends and neighbors,” Fort Tejon’s Lieutenant Whitty said of this area.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, checkpoints provide the most effective results of any DUI enforcement strategies, while yielding cost savings of $6 for every $1 spent.

Checkpoints are placed in areas highly likely to deter drunk and drugged driving. Officer and public safety are also carefully considered.

This is part of the May 24, 2013 online edition of The Mountain Enterprise.

Have an opinion on this matter? We'd like to hear from you.