"In addition to Troopers and TPSO Deputies, the Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff's Office Mobile Command Post will be on site with a registered nurse and an assistant district attorney present to help streamline the 'blood draw' warrants and collect blood samples from suspected impaired drivers," according to Trooper Nick Manale.
He says they will only seek a warrant and stick a needle in a driver's arm at the checkpoint if they refuse a breathalyzer test.
Manale calls it "part of ongoing proactive efforts to remove impaired drivers from our roadways."
He notes that if drivers initially refuse the breath test, they usually change their minds when given the option of having blood drawn at the scene instead.
"According to research conducted by the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission, 251 alcohol related fatalities were reported across Louisiana in 2011 with nearly 7000 suspected impaired drivers refusing to submit to a breath alcohol test," Manale explained.
The trooper says blood tests help build "solid cases that can lead to impaired driving convictions."
He says they will also use the roadblock to look for motorists not wearing seat belts, unrestrained children in vehicles, and any dangerous driving behaviors such as speeding, following too closely, and driving while distracted.