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KPD receives new trailer to help officers set up DUI checkpoints

The trailer and a custom wrap around it were bought with a $200,000 grant from the Tennessee Highway Safety Office.
Credit: KPD

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — The Knoxville Police Department said they received a new trailer to help them create DUI checkpoints. They said it will enhance how they enforce road safety and educate people about the dangers of driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

The trailer can be hitched to a truck and is covered with pictures showing KPD cruisers. It also includes slogans like, "drive high, get a DUI," and "if you feel different, you drive different."

The trailer and the wrap were bought with a $200,000 grant from the Tennessee Highway Safety Office. The police department said that it was not bought with money from city taxpayers. The THSO is tasked with developing safety programs that address behavioral factors that can make roads more dangerous.

"This trailer will allow us to expand our in-the-field sobriety testing capabilities and provide any officers conducting DUI checkpoints with space to do any necessary paperwork and protection from the elements," KPD said on social media.

KPD also said the new trailer will be used for future DUI checkpoints and as a display at events around Knoxville. Before it will be used in checkpoints though, two DUI instructors will attend training about the legal requirements surrounding checkpoints and learn about the best practices for them.

The trailer will be able to serve several purposes. A spokesperson said it will be able to store and transport equipment for DUI checkpoints, such as traffic cones and signs. It also has heating and cooling systems, giving officers at the checkpoints a chance to step out of the elements and stay safe.

The trailer also has LED lights to help illuminate checkpoints at night, as well as space for officers to bring laptops and paperwork in case an arrest is made. There will also be portable breathalyzers inside the trailer.

The training is scheduled for fall 2022 and before a checkpoint, KPD said they would tell the community about its time, day and location as required by law.

Anyone interested will be able to see the new trailer as a display during the Festival on the Fourth in downtown Knoxville. A spokesperson said it will likely be on the Clinch Avenue bridge.

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