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Are DUI Checkpoints effective?

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Drinking and Driving is a serious crime with serious consequences. DUI Checkpoints cost not only the state lots of money, but they also cost us our rights. Are they effective and worth our giving up our freedom?

The answer if you look at the statistics is “no.”

Checkpoints do not perform nearly as well as saturation patrol – Having maximum enforcement on the street looking for signs of DUI has been found much more effective than DUI checkpoints.

  • A handful of studies have confirmed that checkpoints are not as efficient as simple roving patrols are. In 2009, officers in the great state of California¬†stopped nearly 1.8 million drivers at DUI checkpoints. Just over 5,000 individuals were arrested, meaning there was a success rate of around .45 percent. That’s not 45 percent – it’s .45 percent. In the same state during the same calendar year, roving patrols had a 14.7 percent rate in finding drunk drivers, as over 5,800 drunk drivers were arrested after roving patrols checked out nearly 40,000 vehicles.
  • In 2007, the Commonwealth of Virginia had a .33 percent checkpoint success rate. When it came to the roving patrol units, there was an 8.1 percent success rate in 2007.

DUI checkpoints are not only an inefficient way to crackdown on drunks, but are unfair to the 98-99 percent of drivers out there who want to drive from place to place without having to show their papers.

Isn’t a better idea to assign police patrols to an area that’s heavily populated with bars? Isn’t it better for the rest of us if the police investigated and looked for suspicious drivers?

Driving in the late hours, you don’t need a master’s degree to spot a drunk driver, especially if you’re in a one-lane road. If you see a driver swerve, stop suddenly or do anything else weird while driving, it’s safe to say he or she is probably drunk.

Police would at least have a good reason to pull the driver over in that instance and not cause headaches for those who follow the law.

It’s important to nab all of the drunk drivers out there.

However, the rights of the law-abiding drivers should be protected too.

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