Fewer Motorists, More Traffic Tickets in San Diego
COVID-19 has impacted the nation in various ways, including the number of DUI arrests and speeding tickets issued in San Diego County. While many drivers embrace the open streets and highways that resulted from stay-at-home orders, fewer motorists on the roads allow law enforcement officers to spot traffic violators easier than before such orders were implemented.
This is important to remember because while there are fewer drivers on San Diego’s roads and highways, there is more opportunity for police officers to notice and punish dangerous drivers.
Miami is no different. Residents are just as vulnerable to getting a traffic ticket and DUI charge as San Diego drivers are.
Although Miami is slowly going back to normal, it’s not there yet. Thus, I encourage you to drive lawfully despite how tempting it may be to take advantage of less traffic. You may end up going to jail, getting fined and losing your driving privileges. It’s not worth it.
The San Diego Police, California Highway Patrol (CHP) and San Diego County Sheriff’s Department all reported an increase in DUI arrests and speeding tickets during March and April. The following data describes the number of DUI arrests for every traffic infraction made by each agency in March and April:
- San Diego Police Department: 4.71 DUI arrests for every 100 traffic citations in 2020, as opposed to about 3 arrests per 100 traffic infractions in 2017, 2018 and 2019.
- California Highway Patrol: 7.66 DUI arrests for every 100 traffic citations in 2020, as opposed to about 6 arrests per 100 traffic infractions in 2017, 2018 and 2019.
- San Diego County Sheriff’s Department: 11.79 DUI arrests for every 100 traffic citations in 2020, as opposed to about 6 arrests per 100 traffic infractions in 2017, 2018 and 2019.
SDPD Traffic Division Sgt. John Perdue said he noticed a lot of DUIs occurred near fast-food restaurants, as opposed to bars. From his experience, he observed that “ … drivers have usually been drinking at home before stopping to get food, despite the availability of food delivery services such as UberEats, Postmates and Doordash,” according to the Times of San Diego.
The number of DUI-related deaths has also spiked. The San Diego County District Attorney reported 5 DUI-related deaths from January through April and 7 DUI-related deaths from May 4th to June 17th. For comparison, the DA’s office recorded 8 DUI-related fatalities in 2019, 12 in 2018 and 7 in 2017.
In other words, there has been a total of 12 deadly DUI crashes within only 6 months this year, which is the same number of deaths that occurred in 2018 as a whole. What’s noteworthy is that 7 of the 12 DUI-related deaths this year occurred within six weeks.
Although the number of speeding infractions is lower this year (so far) compared to the previous three years, speeding tickets for drivers going over 65 mph has increased. Check out the following statistics:
- SDPD gave 395 speeding tickets for drivers going over 65 mph which is 7.3% of overall traffic infractions. The rate for these infractions was lower in the past three years:
- 4.38% in 2017
- 4.02% in 2018
- 3.44% in 2019
- CHP officers in San Diego County saw a jump in speeding tickets for drivers going over 100 mph. They issued 920 tickets for 100+ mph drivers in March and April, which is higher than the March and April statistics for the past two years.
- 505 tickets were given to 100+ mph drivers in 2019
- 390 tickets were given to 100+ mph drivers in 2018
Got a Ticket? Fight It.
It’s fair to argue that even though there are fewer drivers on the roads due to COVID-19, the same number of officers are still going to work every day and doing their jobs, as they are essential workers. This means that you are potentially facing a higher risk of getting a traffic ticket in Miami during COVID-19, despite the city’s slow reopening.
As such, I urge you to reach out to me at 305-330-1976 if you were arrested for a DUI-related offense or accused of a traffic violation in Miami. As a former prosecutor backed by 30+ years of experience, your future is in trusted hands when you put me on your side.