One of the most quizzical ways to get a DUI, is through a sobriety checkpoints. These checkpoints can pop up at any point in time, but are quite common during the holiday season. However, your biggest question, like many others, is what to expect if you happen to come upon a checkpoint. What do they look for? Where will they likely set up? And how do I avoid them?

Sobriety Checkpoints: Where, When, and What They’re Looking For


Officers may set up a DWI checkpoint at any time they chose. In fact, in most cases, officers schedule these checkpoints in advance throughout different areas. Most of the time, these stops take place at night as people would be leaving parties or bars. These checks occur a lot around holidays. For instance, Independence Day, Labor Day, Christmas, and New Year’s are popular times for DWI checkpoints. Because these points in time are likely to bring more drunk drivers to the road, more checkpoints will inevitably be out there to try and stop them.


Sobriety checkpoints will often be set up along busy streets, or a street that connects to a common drinking spot. Typically, if the road sees a lot of traffic, or drunk drivers, then it will be at the top of the list for officers. No matter the location, keep in mind that both sides of the road are going to face a stop.

What Do They Look For?

During a sobriety checkpoint, an officer will ask to see your license. They’ll start by checking to make sure the license is valid. Then, they might ask where you’re going to, or coming from. They’ll watch your basic functions, and look for signs of impairment, such as slurred speech, or poor coordination. They might also glance into your car for signs of drugs, alcohol, or the remnants of such.

How do I avoid them?

The thing to keep in mind about sobriety checkpoints, although they can feel quite invasive, is that they’re there to make the roads safer. Therefore, the best way to avoid them— is to not drink and drive. Furthermore, if you pass a sobriety checkpoint, do not share it on social media. While you don’t want your friends to drink and drive, you also don’t want to be part of the reason why someone was injured or killed because your friends slipped through the cracks.

Drive safe, drive smart, and drive sober.