PICKAWAY – The Circleville Post of the Ohio State Highway Patrol announced today that two OVI checkpoints will be held in Pickaway County tomorrow June 29, evening.
The OVI checkpoints, which are funded by federal grants, are being held with the purpose of deterring drivers from getting behind the wheel while impaired and to intercept those who choose to do so.
According to Circleville Post Commander Lieutenant Steven k. Herron, there were 379 OVI related fatal crashes in the state of Ohio Last year, with 405 people losing their lives. “OVI checkpoints are designed to not only provide public awareness tot he problem of impaired drivers, but also to deter those dangerous drivers and to remove them from our roadways when they make the unfortunate choice to drive while under the influence of alcohol and drugs”, said Lieutenant Herron.
According to Circleville’s Post checkpoints will be announced on Friday June 29.
According to The Ohio State Highway Patrol, publicizing the checkpoint is a big part of the activity’s effectiveness. Having regular OVI checkpoints and publicizing them reduces impaired driving occurrences.
According to Ohio State Highway Patrolman Holbrook, police can no longer count on the smell of alcohol alone to detect impairment. Many more impairments in modern times are caused by drug use, not alcohol use. Holbrook has special training in impairment detection that uses involuntary biological indicators. For example, improper pupil dilation can be a strong indicator of impairment. Dilated pupils in the day time can be an indication of stimulate use. Constricted pupils at night time can be an indicator of depressant use.
Officers trained in drug induced impairment detection attend a class where homeless volunteer to be tested by the trainees. The students look for biological indicators of drug use and make a prediction about the subject’s usage. Then the homeless submit to a blood test. Candidates must determine which drug categories were in use, if any were in use, with %100 accuracy in order to become certified.
Holbrook mentioned that both illegal and legal drugs could cause impairment. Some prescription drugs come with warnings about driving after using the drug. If someone is using a prescribed drug in accordance with the prescription, then drives, they could still be breaking OVI laws if they are impaired. It’s important to talk to your doctor and/or pharmacist about what impacts a prescription could have on your ability to drive.