The Orange County Sheriff’s Department’s DUI Task Force will hold a checkpoint in San Clemente Friday night to stop inebriated drivers this St. Patrick’s Day weekend.
The DUI/Driver’s License Checkpoint will run somewhere in the city from 6:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m.
The sheriff’s department conducts and publicizes the checkpoints to deter people from ever getting behind the wheel while under the influence.
“Research shows that crashes involving alcohol drop by an average of 20 percent when well-publicized checkpoints are conducted often enough,” a department spokeswoman said in a written release. “Drivers caught driving impaired can expect jail, license suspension, and insurance increases, as well as fines, fees, DUI classes, and other expenses that can exceed $10,000.”
According to the department, in 2011, nearly 10,000 people were killed nationwide in motor vehicle traffic crashes that involved at least one driver or motorcycle rider with a blood alcohol concentration of .08% or higher, and in California, 774 people died because someone failed to designate a sober driver.
“DUI Checkpoints have been an essential part of the phenomenal reduction in DUI deaths that we witnessed since 2006 in California,” said Christopher J. Murphy, Director of the Office of Traffic Safety. “But since the tragedy of DUI accounts for nearly one third of traffic fatalities, Orange County needs the high visibility enforcement and public awareness that checkpoints provide.”
If you see a drunk driver, call 9-1-1.