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Police to Conduct DUI Checkpoint Friday in Murrieta

The Murrieta Police Department Traffic Unit will conduct the checkpoint from 7 p.m. to 3 a.m. Friday, Aug. 24 on Margarita Road north of Torrey Pines Road, according to a news release.

A sobriety/driver's license checkpoint is planned Friday in Murrieta.

The Murrieta Police Department Traffic Unit will conduct the checkpoint from 7 p.m. to 3 a.m. Friday, Aug. 24 on Margarita Road north of Torrey Pines Road, according to a news release.

"DUI checkpoints are a proven enforcement tool effective in reducing the number of persons killed and injured in alcohol involved crashes. Research shows that crashes involving alcohol drop by an average of 20 percent when well-publicized checkpoints are conducted often enough," said Murrieta police Sgt. James Gruwell.

Officers will be making contact with drivers as they pass through the checkpoint and looking for signs of alcohol and/or drug impairment, Gruwell said. They will also check drivers for proper licensing and will strive to delay motorists only momentarily, he said.

"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," Gruwell said.

In 2010, more than 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 (BAC) of .08 percent or higher, Gruwell said. In California, this deadly crime led to 791 deaths because someone failed to designate a sober driver, he said.

“Over the course of the past three years, DUI collisions have claimed four lives and resulted in 43 injury crashes harming 71 of our friends and neighbors,” Gruwell said.

Checkpoints are placed in locations that have the greatest opportunity for achieving drunk and drugged driving deterrence and provide the most safety for officers and the public, Gruwell said.

Funding for the checkpoint was provided to the by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, targeting those who still don’t heed the message to designate a sober driver, Gruwell said.

According to 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. 

“Deaths from drunk and drug-impaired driving are going down in California,” said Christopher J. Murphy, director of the California Office of Traffic Safety. "But that still means that hundreds of our friends, family and co-workers are killed each year, along with tens of thousands who are seriously injured. We must all continue to work together to bring an end to these tragedies.  If you see a Drunk Driver – Call 9-1-1.”

Eddie August 24, 2012 at 08:13 AM
Why would MurrietaPatch give the location of the check point!? Now the drunk drivers will avoid the area.
DeMarie Rossi August 24, 2012 at 08:46 AM
I was wondering about this too!
Eddie August 24, 2012 at 04:06 PM
Murrieta Police need to cancel that location and pop up somewhere else.
SA August 24, 2012 at 04:33 PM
By law Police Departments have to disclose checkpoint locations. If someone is reading the news I highly doubt they are thinking “Oh good I was planning on driving plastered at that location”. Nonetheless, I do think it is a waste of tax payer’s money.
Denise Rossi August 24, 2012 at 05:04 PM
Thank you SA I had no idea they had to disclose checkpoint locations.
Maggie Avants (Editor) August 25, 2012 at 03:18 AM
Hi all, I spoke to police today about why they gave the location. According to Sgt. Gruwell, by law they are required to give the location. In other words, if it is not posted in press release, residents may call the police department beforehand to ask the location. In this instance, a press release was issued with the location and therefore was published on Murrieta Patch. —Maggie
Timber August 26, 2012 at 01:53 AM
Are roadblocks the only way to find drunk drivers?
Duty Bound August 31, 2012 at 11:00 PM
It's the law. Besides, the drunks continue to roll up anyway. And these aren't "roadblocks" as someone called them, but to answer their question: they're not the only way, but they're one of the most effective. If you're not driving drunk, then you've got no problems.

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