It may sound ridiculous, but a company in in Washington State has proposed this very idea in an effort to gather information on the number of impaired drivers in the area. Drivers who voluntarily pulled over and submitted to blood alcohol testing would receive money for their troubles.
The Pacific Research Institute (PIRE) has issued a proposal to the Washington Traffic Safety Commission to conduct voluntary roadside alcohol and drug surveys. Drivers who agreed to pull over would receive $50 for a blood sample, $10 for a saliva sample and an additional $5 for taking part in a written survey. Drivers would be able to leave at any time, provided their blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was below .05%. Surveyed drivers who were too drunk to drive would be prohibited from driving away but would receive transportation to their intended destination, for free.
This program has yet to receive approval, and a number of details would need to be ironed out before it could be implemented even if it is eventually approved. PIRE has requested, for example, that officers be present at the checkpoints and that these officers would be paid overtime by PIRE. It has yet to be determined whether the authorities would be notified when a driver was found to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs, which could potentially lead to their arrest.
Whether the Washington Traffic Safety Commission approves this proposed testing method remains to be seen, but its approval could mean similar programs in other states, including California. The idea of getting paid to participate in a DUI checkpoint may appeal to some, particularly in tough economic times, but it is important to remember that there may be criminal consequences. If a voluntary stop resulted in a DUI arrest and charges, that $50-65 paid for participating would do little to make up for a suspended license, jail time, fines and court fees.
It will be important to fully understand the potential repercussions of a voluntary DUI checkpoint before participating. Even if these are approved and drivers agree to stop, there is no doubt that a number of issues will come up should any arrests result. Even sobriety checkpoints carried out by law enforcement agencies are subject to numerous rules and regulations to ensure they do not infringe upon drivers' constitutional rights. Voluntary stops should be closely monitored as well.
You can find out more about the latest DUI news and laws and can get insight regarding your particular case by calling an Orange County DUI attorney at the Law Offices of Virginia L. Landry. Our attorneys defend clients against any and all DUI-related charges in Southern California, ranging from first time offenses all the way to felony DUI charges for injury accidents, hit-and-run and vehicular manslaughter.