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Can you turn away from a DUI checkpoint?

On Behalf of | Jun 2, 2022 | Criminal Defense Process

When you spot a notice for a DUI checkpoint up ahead on the highway, you might want to avoid it for numerous reasons. But can you do so?

It is legal to avoid a DUI checkpoint. However, it is not so simple as just turning around. If you want to avoid a checkpoint, you have to do so carefully.

What are DUI checkpoints?

LifeSafer discusses DUI checkpoints and their purpose. Police will set up DUI checkpoints in order to catch potential intoxicated drivers and remove them from the road, thus making the road safer for everyone else on it.

In most states, police can do this without giving anyone advance warning. They also do not need to establish alternative routes for those who want to avoid the checkpoint. However, that does not mean that you cannot make your own alternative route.

The one thing to keep in mind is that you must still abide by the rules of the road. You cannot make an illegal U-turn. You cannot drive aggressively or cut off other drivers. You cannot go over the line or speed.

An officer can stop you anyway

If an officer notices you making an illegal move while trying to maneuver around a DUI stop, they have reason to pull you over. And if they pull you over and believe you to have driven under the influence, they can then ask you to take a BAC test, which defeats the purpose of trying to avoid the checkpoint in the first place.

Thus, only turn away from a DUI checkpoint if you have the means to do so in a safe and legal way.