Campaign to ‘Drive Sober’ yields results
It would appear a 20-day, stepped-up effort to enforce the rules of the road in Michigan had some success.
Law enforcement officers from 93 police departments, sheriff’s offices and Michigan State Police posts increased patrols across the state during the end-of-summer Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over enforcement campaign that started Aug.14 and extended through Labor Day on Sept. 2.
Preliminary reports indicate officers made 9,105 traffic stops, arrested 209 drunk drivers, issued 1,159 speeding citations and wrote 35 child restraint citations. In addition, officers made 116 felony arrests during the enforcement period.
“Motorists were asked to make responsible decisions as they celebrated the end of summer and the Labor Day holiday weekend,” said Michael L. Prince, director of the Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning, or OHSP. “If you are impaired by any substance, you shouldn’t drive. There are no excuses.”
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’s drunk driving law contains a zero-tolerance provision for drivers with certain illegal drugs in their system. The same penalties for drunk driving also apply to those convicted under the zero-tolerance drug provision.
During the last Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over enforcement campaign, a trooper from the MSP Rockford Post stopped a vehicle for traveling 111 mph in a 55-mph zone. The driver had a graduated license and three unrelated passengers in the car, which is a violation of the state’s graduated driver’s license program for new drivers. In another incident, a trooper from the MSP Niles Post pulled over a driver for suspected impaired driving. The stop resulted in numerous charges, including delivery and possession of a controlled substance, providing false identification and a charge of operating while intoxicated.
The Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign was supported with federal traffic safety funds coordinated by the OHSP.