A checkpoint to nab those drinking and driving held Saturday on Highway 50 East resulted in the arrest of three people on suspicion of drunken driving and the issuance of 21 citations for drivers' license violations and failure to have proper vehicle registration or insurance papers.
From 5-11 p.m., westbound traffic coming from Lyon County into Carson City was stopped by officers with the Carson City Sheriff's Department and the Nevada Highway Patrol.
In all, 428 vehicles drove through the checkpoint, said Trooper Chuck Allen.
Eastbound traffic did experience some delays beginning when crews were setting up the checkpoint.
Traffic heading into Carson City about 4:30 p.m. was at a standstill at some points.
When the checkpoint opened at 5 p.m. traffic was heavy in the area until about 8 p.m., said Sheriff Ken Furlong.
"This was a great success. It drew a lot of attention," he said. "This did highlight one of our biggest problems and that is the amount of drivers out there driving without insurance, registration or driver's licenses."
Furlong said the location for the checkpoint has been identified by troopers as a "heavy corridor" for drunken drivers.
He said the program, along with speed enforcement and crosswalk stings, are all designed as ways to remind people of the laws.
"You can do these types of programs with the hopes that when they aren't happening, drivers will keep them in mind," he said.
According to Allen, 50 percent of all fatal accidents in Nevada in 2003 involved alcohol.
This is compared to the national average of 40 percent.
"It's been determined that high visibility of traffic enforcement is one of the best ways to ensure compliance with driving under the influence of alcohol laws," he said.
• Contact reporter F.T. Norton at firstname.lastname@example.org or 881-1213.