Salvadoran Authorities to Install Drunk Driving Checkpoints Throughout December

By Eddie Galdamez  |  Dec 12th, 2023

To prevent accidents caused by drunk drivers and prevent fatalities, the Salvadoran Government, via the Vice Ministry of Transportation of El Salvador (VMT), will implement drunk driving checkpoints every day during December across the entire country.

Nelson Reyes, the Vice Minister of Transportation of El Salvador, announced the plan implementation during a December 11, the Frente a Frente TV interview.

These checkpoints will be operational to identify a maximum number of intoxicated drivers during the holiday season.

“By December we will be carrying them out every day! Every day we will be having this type of control,” stated the vice minister.

The Vice Minister of Transportation called on drivers not to drive under the influence of alcohol during the season and to avoid spending the Christmas celebrations in prison.

Reyes communicated that there is a false perception that detainees only spend 72 hours in detention; he explained that due to the validity of the state of exception, individuals detained intoxicated might have to wait 15 days to see a judge.

Furthermore, “the judge can determine that you have to stay longer awaiting trial,” remarked Reyes.

Last September, the Vice Ministry of Transportation announced that they would double vehicle controls to reduce the number of road accidents and began installing anti-doping checkpoints.

According to the Vice Ministry of Transportation, from January to date, 1,674 people have been arrested for dangerous driving, marking a 25% increase compared to the same period last year.

The penalty for dangerous driving is 4 to 6 years for a private person and up to 8 if they are a public transport driver.

We understand that during these holidays, people often gather with family and friends to celebrate, and there’s nothing wrong with that. However, we encourage everyone to do so responsibly. Nelson Reyes, Vice Minister of Transportation of El Salvador.

Driving intoxicated has been a problem in Salvadoran culture; driving drunk is one of the principal reasons El Salvador has high fatalities during the holidays. Implementing drunk driving checkpoints around tourist locations during December will reduce accidents.