The Lake Elsinore Police Department Traffic Unit is conducting a DUI/driver's license checkpoint Aug. 30 and extra patrols will be working this Labor Day weekend looking for intoxicated drivers, it has been announced.
“During the checkpoint officers will be contacting drivers passing through the checkpoint for signs of alcohol and/or drug impairment. Officers will also check for proper licensing and will strive to delay motorists only momentarily. 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,” the announcement from the Lake Elsinore Police Department stated.
The checkpoint location has not been disclosed. Most checkpoints begin in the evening hours and run through the following morning.
In the past 12 months, the Lake Elsinore Police Department has investigated 30 DUI collisions in which 45 persons were injured, according to the announcement. Additionally during this time, the department made over 200 DUI arrests.
Funding for the checkpoint is provided to the Lake Elsinore Police Department by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, according to the announcement.
Lake Elsinore’s crackdown is running in tandem with a countywide effort that has netted 478 arrests in the first 12 days of the end-of-summer “Riverside County Avoid the 30 campaign” -- named for the number of police agencies involved – that got under way on Aug. 16.
Saturation patrols and sobriety checkpoints have been deployed in a number of locations, including Banning, Beaumont, Corona, La Quinta, Moreno Valley, Murrieta, Norco, Palm Springs, Perris, Rancho Mirage, Riverside and Temecula.
Through Wednesday, 478 motorists were arrested on suspicion of DUI, compared to 498 arrested during the same phase of last summer's Avoid campaign, according to Riverside police Lt. Mark Rossi, the Avoid coordinator.
Two people were killed and five people were seriously injured in a DUI- related collision in east Moreno Valley on Aug. 18, according to Rossi.
The Avoid crackdown, which continues through Labor Day weekend, is part of a national campaign, "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over."
This weekend, anti-DUI operations are planned in Beaumont, Eastvale, Indio, La Quinta, Lake Elsinore, Moreno Valley, Murrieta, Palm Springs, Riverside and Temecula.
The Avoid campaign will coincide with the CHP's "Maximum Enforcement Period," which gets underway this weekend and continues to midnight Monday. During the MEP, all available CHP officers hit the streets to nab intoxicated motorists, speeders and other traffic violators.
During last summer's two-week Avoid campaign, 710 people were arrested on suspicion of DUI, compared to 762 during the same period in 2011. –City News Service and Toni McAllister contributed to this report.