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More Police Sobriety Checkpoints Lead To Decreased Drunk Driving Incidents

Update Date: Jan 09, 2017 09:25 PM EST

One of the major causes of road accidents and deaths is due to drunk driving. By analyzing data collected from drivers, the police, and defense attorneys in the United States, the researchers determined that more police sobriety checkpoints could lead to lesser drunk driving incidents.

The study published by the Research Society on Alcoholism looks into how many times drivers drive while impaired and how said drivers think between two factors, police sobriety checkpoints and penalties, will stop them from driving drunk. The researchers analyzed data collected from drivers, the police, and defense attorneys specializing in driving while impaired(DWI) cases from eight different cities in the United States.

In order to measure the effectiveness between police sobriety checkpoints and legal penalties when caught drunk driving, the researchers interviewed individuals on which of the two scenarios they were more likely afraid to happen to them. The researchers then asked the individuals if there was an increase in police sobriety checkpoints and harsher legal penalties for DWI, which of the two scenarios would most likely deter them from driving drunk.

The results of the study show that in both instances, the individuals are less likely to risk driving while impaired if there was certainty of getting caught in police sobriety checkpoints. On the other hand, the certainty of legal penalties even if they become harsher did not deter the individuals from taking the chance of driving while impaired.

In the US alone, at least 10,000 deaths per year are caused by drunk driving incidents. Although traditional response, legal and criminal penalties, are enforced, it did not stop or lessen the occurrence of drunk driving throughout the country.

Based on the results of the study, the researchers suggest enforcing more police sobriety checkpoints is an effective deterrent for individuals for driving while impaired than enforcing harsher legal and criminal penalties.

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