The Chief's Youth DUI Checklist
The following statements and questions are designed to help you ascertain how extensive the youth DUI problem is in your community:
1) Nationally, about 1 percent of licensed drivers (of all ages) are arrested for DUI each year. Drivers under age 21 are about 8 percent of licensed drivers but about 17 percent of fatally injured drivers.
- What percentage of DUI arrestees in your jurisdiction are under age 21? _____
- What percentage of fatally injured drivers in your jurisdiction are under age 21? _____
2) Officers will make DUI arrests when DUI enforcement is supported and promoted by police management.
- Is there a command emphasis on DUI and youth DUI enforcement in your department?
3) Youths drink and drive at times and places that differ from older drivers. Often large numbers of youths congregate in houses or fields for keg parties.
- Are DUI patrols deployed at key times and locations to detect youthful DUI offenders?
- Does your department have an effective strategy for dealing with large concentrations of impaired youths in one place at one time?
4) Commanders in police agencies with high DUI enforcement rates consistently emphasize the importance of training. New youth DUI laws such as Zero Tolerance for Youth (.00-.02 BAC) and Use & Lose require special training.
- Do police officers in your department receive initial and periodic training to maintain and upgrade their DUI enforcement skills and knowledge?
5) BACs at or below the per se or presumptive limit are common among youth DUIs. Prosecutors’ failure to prosecute and judges’ reluctance to convict low-BAC and/or youthful offenders have a direct effect on officers’ decisions to arrest or not arrest impaired drivers.
- Are low-BAC DUIs and youth DUIs prosecuted in your jurisdiction?
- Are low-BAC and youth DUIs convicted in your jurisdiction?
6) Law enforcement agencies with proactive youth DUI programs typically have broad community support.
- Is there widespread support in your community for youth DUI enforcement?
Source: D. F. Preusser, P. L. Ulmer, and C. W. Preusser, Obstacles to Enforcement of Youthful (Under 21) Impaired Driving final report to NHTSA under contract DTNH22-91-C-05020.