The L.A. County Sheriff’s Department’s Traffic Services Detail will be running a checkpoint in West Hollywood on Friday from 7 p.m. to 3 a.m. to discover drivers who are under the influence of alcohol or drugs or who are driving without a license.
The Sheriff’s Department conducts regular checks in an effort to deter people from driving under the influence. Research shows that crashes involving alcohol drop by an average of 20 percent when well-publicized checkpoints are conducted often enough.
Deputies will be contacting drivers passing through the checkpoint for signs of alcohol and/or drug impairment. Deputies 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 impaired can expect jail, license suspension, and insurance increases, as well as fines, fees, DUI classes, 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 percent or higher. In California, this deadly crime led to 774 deaths because someone failed to designate a sober driver.
“Over the course of the past three years, DUI collisions have claimed 49 lives and resulted in 893 injury crashes harming 1,113 of our friends and neighbors,” said Sgt. Joseph Jakl of the Risk Management Bureau.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), checkpoints have provided the most effective documented results of any of the DUI enforcement strategies, while also yielding considerable cost savings of $6 for every $1 spent. Based on collision statistics and frequency of DUI arrests, DUI checkpoints are placed in locations that have the greatest opportunity for achieving drunk and drugged driving deterrence. Locations are chosen with safety considerations for the officers and the public.
CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story listed the checkpoint end time as 3 p.m.