A lot of digital ink has been spilled over a new tactic for avoiding a DUI arrest. Originating in Florida, the Fair DUI Flyer is a piece of paper that one attaches to the outside of a car at a DUI checkpoint, like this:Fair DUI Flyer - not a wise  choice in Arizona

Drivers would also show their license and registration through the window.

You’ll find a good deal of YouTube footage of mystified Florida cops waving drivers through after seeing the flyer.

But should you try this in Arizona?

Not unless you enjoy hassles. Word is out that Arizona police would not be constrained by the tactic, which is promoted under the premise that DUI checkpoints are illegal. Arizona, in fact, operates few such checkpoints. The state usually relies upon saturation patrols, which involved exercising vigilance and stopping drivers only when there is a legal reason. The actions the police are most concerned about are:

  • Moving incorrectly between lanes
  • Tailgating
  • Aggressive driving and speeding

They will also be on the looking for other violations, such as mechanical problems (e.g. taillight out). Unlike DUI checkpoints, saturation patrols are standard police procedure, and are legal in all 50 states.

Once he or she stops you, the officer is legally allowed to ask for name, proof of insurance and vehicle registration. Failure to provide this gives the officer probable cause to suspect that you’re hiding something.

It’s hard to say how the DUI checkpoint controversy will shake out over the long run. It’s up to each state to determine if they are legal. However, saturation patrols are always going to be out there, in Arizona and elsewhere, and if you’re pulled over, the Fair DUI flyer is probably not your best option.

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