Stephen Ellison

San Jose Police to Conduct DUI Checkpoint Thursday Night

San Jose police will be conducting a DUI-driver's license checkpoint Thursday night at an undisclosed location, the department said in a release this week.

The checkpoint is scheduled between 8 p.m. Thursday and 2 a.m. Friday.

SJPD said the checkpoint is part of its effort in conjunction with the Office of Traffic Safety to educate all drivers that "DUI Doesn’t Just Mean Booze." Prescription drugs and marijuana also can impair one's ability to drive and can result in a DUI, police said.

DUI checkpoints are placed in locations based on collision statistics and frequency of DUI arrests, police said. Past checkpoints have been located in the downtown area.

Officers will be looking for signs of alcohol or drug impairment, as well as proper licensing, police said. Specially trained officers will be evaluating those suspected of drug-impaired driving.

Those caught driving impaired can expect jail time, fines, fees, DUI classes, license suspensions and other expenses that can exceed $10,000, police said.

In recent years, California has seen an increase in drug-impaired driving crashes. Alcohol involved collisions in the state led to 1,155 deaths and nearly 24,000 serious injuries in 2014, the latest year of available statistics, police said.

Studies of California drivers have shown that 30 percent of drivers in fatal crashes had one or more drugs in their systems, according to SJPD. A study of active drivers showed more tested positive for drugs that may impair driving (14 percent) than did for alcohol (7.3 percent), police said.

Of the drugs, marijuana was most prevalent, at 7.4 percent, slightly more than alcohol, SJPD said.

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