Apparently, the DUI checklane scheduled for Feb. 17 , 2006 was cancelled because it was cold that night. March 6, 2006, however, was a gorgeous night and a much more pleasant climate for conducting Kansas City’s first DUI checklane of the year. In my last post I remarked that out of the hundreds of vehicles stopped, there was usually a 1-2% DUI arrest rate. The results of the March 6 DUI checklane were apparently 476 vehicles stopped and 12 DUI arrests. That is about a 2.5% rate for DUI arrests. We will never know how many of those 12 actually get convicted of DUI. I am sure the KCMO police will do better with their St. Patrick’s Day checklane, but still, I think that law enforcement could be more effective using other tools at their disposal.
As I suggested last time, a saturation patrol might be more effective. In a saturation patrol, the police go out and strictly enforce the traffic laws. Lo an behold, they often find that people breaking the traffic laws also happen to be intoxicated. In fact, the police scrapped their February 17 checkland and conducted a saturation patrol instead. The numbers on that were 15 stopped cars for 4 DUI’s. Thus, the percentage for the saturation patrol was about 26%. What is more, all of the people who were obeying the law and driving safely were allowed to proceed on their way without being delayed in a constitutionally dubious checklane.