Law enforcement stress ‘Drive Sober’ for Labor Day

As August winds toward the Labor Day holiday, the Michigan State Police wants people to savor what remains of summer safely, especially when behind the wheel.

Law enforcement will continue to show zero tolerance for drunk and drugged driving during the three-week Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over enforcement period that starts Wednesday and extends through Labor Day on Sept. 2. Increased messaging about the dangers of driving impaired, coupled with increased enforcement on the roads, aim to drastically reduce serious injuries and deaths caused by impaired driving.

“Labor Day should be a time for friends and family to enjoy the last days of summer,” said Michael Prince, Office of Highway Safety Planning director. “As always, officers will make zero exceptions for impaired driving. There are no excuses. Driving a vehicle while impaired is dangerous.”

Throughout the enforcement period, officers will be on the lookout for motorists under the influence of drugs and alcohol. In Michigan, it is illegal to drive with a blood-alcohol concentration of .08 or higher, although motorists can be arrested at any BAC level if an officer believes they are impaired. Michigan has what is commonly referred to as a zero-tolerance drugged driving law.

In Michigan, the percentage of alcohol-related fatalities runs about 11 times higher than fatalities in all crashes and the serious injury level was about six times higher. Last year’s Labor Day holiday had 12 fatal crashes, with six crashes involving alcohol.

On average, dealing with a DUI can cost $10,000 in attorney fees, fines, court costs, lost time at work, higher insurance rates, car towing and repairs, etc.

A new impaired driving ad is airing this month that focuses on the role of first responders and what they see at a crash with an impaired driver. A link can be found at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V64xF3viMWE.

The Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign is supported with federal traffic safety funds provided by the U.S. Department of Transportation and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and coordinated by the OHSP.

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