Crackdown nets fewer drunk drivers this year

Law enforcement agencies doing 'saturation patrolling' in different cities

Officers in Santa Clara County have arrested 72 people for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs so far during their Fourth of July crackdown.

The arrests, made by officers from 15 county law enforcement agencies, made the arrests between 12:01 a.m. Friday and midnight Sunday, according to the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office.

The crackdown ended at midnight Monday, except in San Francisco, where motorcycle police were to patrol until 3 a.m. because drivers tend not to notice police on motorcycles as readily as police in patrol cars.

In 2009, there were 95 DUI arrests during the same 72-hour period.

No fatalities have been reported.

DUI arrests in Santa Clara County are down from this time last year, according to the sheriff's office.

On Sunday night, extra DUI saturation patrols were deployed in Palo Alto, Los Altos Hills, Cupertino, Saratoga, Milpitas and San Jose. no specific arrest figures were available by community.

Residents and motorists are encouraged to report drunken drivers by calling 911.

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Posted by Amazed
a resident of Palo Alto Orchards
on Jul 5, 2010 at 10:33 am

DUH ! no wonder arrest are down, they advertise ! how many drivers skirted the locations ? if I knew were they where & Iwas blasted, I would drive another route ! i am told that they have to advertise, but that is worse than the offense itself ! how stupid is our legal system ! the goal of checkpoints is too catch people "off guard", not encourge them to drink more ! no wonder our great country is so screwed up !

Like this comment
Posted by just say no
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jul 5, 2010 at 10:46 am

I hope fewer arrests mean fewer people are driving drunk.

The cops have been announcing their anti-DUI campaign for years. I doubt they did more "advertising" this year.

Like this comment
Posted by To amazed
a resident of Greater Miranda
on Jul 5, 2010 at 4:24 pm

The check points are strategically placed around the local watering holes, whether or not you "find" another route, police presence is often noticed/felt. Looks like you don't really know what its like to go through one so I wouldn't pass judgement. In South San Jose they post near the freeways often on both sides of main roads (jackson st. during cinco de mayo) They do stop people, but even more importantly they deter people. I'd rather deter people from even getting in the car then having to catch them.

Like this comment
Posted by spyy
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 5, 2010 at 5:16 pm

cause they spying on weed smokers! they dont care about real criminals, just jealous of pot smokers superior intelligence and worth to society. rather than useless tax wasting ''cops''.

Like this comment
Posted by Walter_E_Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 6, 2010 at 7:05 am

Walter_E_Wallis is a registered user.

I have always felt that checkpoints were an inefficient use of resources. The reason for laws against drunk driving is that drunks drive erratically thus unsafely. Police are trained to recognize drunk driving and respond. Dump the roadblocks and get the police back on patrol.

Like this comment
Posted by James
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Jul 6, 2010 at 12:34 pm

It is difficult to determine the success of the Fourth of July "crackdown" based on 24% fewer arrests. I agree with other comments contributors that intimidation efforts such as roadblocks are not necessarily successful methods but are easier for police to manage. I am not dismissing the difficulty of the police task to patrol for drunk drivers, but suggest that better, more innovative methods need to be introduced as the issue will worsen and not improve as more drivers may feel empowered to drive under the influence of marijuana than ever before as well.

Like this comment
Posted by just say no
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jul 6, 2010 at 12:46 pm

Double the tax on booze and use the money to double the number of cops on anti-DUI patrols.

Like this comment
Posted by just say no
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jul 6, 2010 at 3:32 pm

The Mercury-News says there were 94 DUI arrests in Santa Clara County over the holiday weekend. Why does Palo Alto Online say only 72 arrests? Web Link

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