The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has turned to a different method for gathering information about the amount of drinking and drug use currently engaged in by U.S. drivers, according to a CNN report: the agency has set up roadblocks.
In Alabama recently, NHTSA agents set up two traffic stops where they asked consenting drivers about their drug and alcohol use and offered incentives for breath, saliva, and blood samples. The purpose of the roadblocks was to gather information the NHTSA can use to paint a more accurate picture of drug and alcohol use among the nation’s drivers, which may become the basis for more targeted campaigns to educate the public about the risks of impaired driving. Participation was voluntary; drivers were free to decline to answer questions or give samples.
The agency has used these types of roadblocks since the 1970s to collect data; the most recent use was in 2007. The NHTSA plans to repeat this year’s roadblocks in Alabama and in several other U.S. states over the summer. However, the program has raised questions from several people and organizations, including local police departments, who are concerned about privacy or logistics.
One of the best ways to reduce your chances of causing a car accident is to avoid getting behind the wheel unless you are sober and clear-headed. If you’re injured by a driver who doesn’t take this crucial safety step, however, don’t hesitate to contact a San Diego car accident attorney to learn more about your legal rights and options.