Now that summer is in full swing here in the Garden State, there are numerous occasions to celebrate; family gatherings, company outings, and after-work events in restaurants and bars throughout the state. Although the state police and local law enforcement agencies have been doing their part to curb the amount of drinking and driving on New Jersey roadways for years now, every week dozens of drivers are charged with DWI or impairment due to prescription medication (drug DUI).
As drunken driving defense lawyers representing people in Bergen, Monmouth, Passaic and Atlantic County, as well as the rest of the state, we understand fully the negative impact that a drunk driving conviction can have on a person’s career and personal life. It isn’t just the monetary hit that a driver takes following a sentence for first-time DWI or drug DUI. A driver’s insurance rates will automatically go up significantly and remain there for several years.
One of the places that drivers get arrested for drinking and driving is the all-too-common sobriety checkpoint. Also known as a DWI or drunken driving roadblock, these temporary checkpoints are erected by police in areas that typically have a high incidence of DWI or DUI arrested. This fact is the justification for state and local police to set up a roadblock in order to assess drivers’ sobriety one at a time.
According to news reports, New Jersey, along with other states across the country, will be participating in a continuation of what has become a summertime staple — the DWI checkpoint program. This ongoing program includes the operation thought our state of multiple checkpoint locations in various counties, such asOcean County. Sobriety roadblocks reportedly work by supplementing local police enforcement of drunken driving laws.
In an effort to minimize the number of traffic deaths reportedly caused by intoxicated driver, New Jersey’s continuing summer DWI checkpoint program is designed to assist law enforcement officials in detecting, arresting and prosecuting drivers who allegedly choose to drive while impaired by alcohol, prescription medication (drug DUI) and even illicit drugs, such as cocaine and marijuana.
Last year, according to news reports, Ocean County was well ahead of the pack in all of New Jersey when it came to fatal roadway accidents. Police statistics show that 58 individuals lost their lives in DWI- and DUI-related automobile wrecks. The state’s drunken driving checkpoint program — funded to some extent by the county’s Board of Chosen Freeholders as well as the state’s Highway Traffic Safety division — is expected to be include DWI roadblocks staffed by local police officers and supported by the county’s prosecutor’s office and sheriff’s department K-9 unit.
Based on news reports, this latest anti-drunk driving campaign will focus on drivers that are either impaired due to alcohol consumption or because of drug use — legal or illegal. If past history is any guide, drivers can look forward to seeing more officers on the road as well as frequent DWI-DUI sobriety checkpoints in the after hours on Fridays and weekends. Police are required by law to post public notice of all DWI checkpoints with local news services.
Ocean County seeks to reduce traffic fatalities this summer after leading state in 2010, TomsRiverNJOnline.com, June 13, 2011