San Diego law enforcement will begin its drunk driving crackdown today. The increased patrols and checkpoints will continue through January 2, 2012. Local police departments have received grants from the Office of Traffic Safety, (OTS), through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, (NHTSA), to conduct the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign through the holiday season.
Before you go out to celebrate this holiday season, make sure you have a plan in case you over indulge in holiday cheer. Pack a bag and plan on staying at the home of the party host. Designate a driver to remain sober and be responsible to drive you home. Save a San Diego taxi company’s telephone number in your phone and use it. Use public transportation or call a sober friend or family member for a ride. Do not be a statistic!
NHTSA announced this week drunk driving deaths were down in 2010. In fact, the 791 deaths due to an alcohol-related accident was the lowest number ever. In 2009, there were 950 deaths that were contributed to a DUI accident. OTS believes this decrease is due to their drunk driving checkpoint efforts, citing a cost savings of $6 for every $1 spent.
Millions of dollars have been spent on drunk driving enforcement. In 2009, $11.7 million was budgeted for 1,740 sobriety checkpoints statewide. Last year, that amount rose to $16.8 million dollars for 2,553 roadblocks.
DUI checkpoints are the most documented and cost the most money. Often DUI roadblocks result in only a couple of arrests for the massive amount of money and resources spent on setting up and manning these sites. Other studies show that saturation patrols cost less money, uses less resources, and result in more drunk driving arrests.
Many law enforcement departments are doing more saturation patrols. Costa Mesa Police Chief, Tom Gazsi, showed the council members that checkpoints are more of an educational service while saturation patrols take more drunk drivers off the street, according to latimes.com. Further, these patrols require half the staff which means a lot less overtime to be paid. In a time when city and county budgets are an issue, more and more agencies may move towards these campaigns over the roadblocks.
If you have been arrested and charged with drunk driving, hire an exclusively DUI defense firm that will aggressively defend your case. Do not just plead guilty even if you had a blood alcohol content (BAC) at or above the legal limit of .08%. There may still be defenses in your case that can lead to reduced charges with less punishment, or even a dismissal! For a free, confidential consultation, contact The Law Offices of Susan L. Hartman today at 619-260-1122 or use the “Contact Us” form on this page.