Sobriety Checkpoints In Oklahoma Used On Labor Day Weekend By OHP

Labor Day weekend sees an uptick in impaired driving, so the OHP operates checkpoints around the holidays to help keep the roads safe.

Sunday, September 3rd 2023, 11:08 pm



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The Oklahoma Highway Patrol says they see an uptick in impaired driving around holidays every year. To help prevent this issue, they set up checkpoints across the metro, to hopefully catch drunk drivers in action.

“It’s not because we want to ruin people’s lives,” says Trooper Lisa Jorgensen. “It’s because we want to save them.”

Over 13,000 people in the U.S. died from drunk or impaired driving in 2021, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

“We want people to drive safely,” said Trooper Jorgensen. “We want them to know that we’re out here hoping to catch some impaired drivers and get them off the road before they hurt or kill somebody.”

Trooper Jorgensen says they pull over more drunk drivers on holiday weekends.

“With the extra day off work, going to the lake, drinking at the football games,” she says. “People don’t realize they’ve had too much to drink to drive safely.”

She also says this isn't a new trend. According to OHP, Labor Day Weekend in 2021 saw 53 crashes related to drugs or alcohol, which resulted in two deaths.

“My goal is to have no crashes, injuries or fatalities that are a result of impaired driving,” Trooper Jorgensen said.

One way the OHP works toward this goal is through sobriety checkpoints.

“We’re not running license plates or asking for driver’s licenses or names. We’re just having a 10 to 15 second conversation at the window,” Trooper Jorgensen explained. If we don’t see something, hear something, or smell something that makes us think there may be impaired driving going on then we let them go.”

But if something sends up a red flag, sobriety tests are brought in. If necessary, arrests are made.

“This will be their reminder to make a plan if they’re drinking,” Trooper Jorgensen said. “Call an Uber, make plans to have a designated driver.”

The checkpoint at I-40 and the Broadway Extension stopped five impaired drivers Saturday night. OHP wants people to remember to drive sober this Labor Day.

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