DUII arrest notification letters sent from the
OLCC to a Beaverton bar over a two-year span.
According to Metro’s 2012 State of Safety report, driving under the influence of intoxicants (DUII) is the single largest contributing factor to fatal traffic collisions in the region. People who have too much to drink (or get impaired by drugs) and try to operate a car are responsible for 57% of all road fatalities region-wide.
While the drunk driving problem is relatively well-known among safety advocates and even the general public, what’s not often talked about are the restaurants and bars that serve the alcohol in the first place. Oregon law (ORS 471.412) states that a liquor license holder, “may not allow a person to consume or to continue to consume alcoholic beverages on the licensed premises after observing that the person is visibly intoxicated.”
Despite that law, police officers in the Portland region arrest hundreds of people each year who name the specific bar they came from prior to being pulled over. The names of those bars are then sent to the Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC), which keeps a running tally of the totals and ranks the worst offenders.
Now a local lawyer, Scott Kocher of Forum Law Group, is bringing attention to the establishments in the OLCC database. Kocher provided us with several years of the OLCC’s “Top Ten” lists that ranks each establishment in their license database (over 5,300 bars and restaurants in the Portland metro region) by how many DUI arrests they are linked to each year.