Statewide Anti-Drunk Driving Campaign Begins
A statewide anti-drunk driving campaign called “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” goes into effect today, July 1, 2014. The campaign, which occurs all over the nation, is organized locally by the Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning. It was created to target motorists who are driving while impaired.
The federally funded campaign is set to run from July 1st through July 7th, a period which includes the 4th of July holiday weekend. Law enforcement officers from 156 agencies across the state are placing more officers on the roads to enforce this statewide drunk driving crackdown.
According to statistics provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, over 10,000 people die annually in the U.S. as a result of drunk driving. The 4th of July weekend in particular is a period of time when there are a higher number of alcohol-related accidents.
According to the Michigan State Police, there is an increase in alcohol-related traffic deaths and serious injuries during the summer months. July and August have the highest number of fatalities. Data from the 5 year period between 2008 and 2012 shows that drunk driving resulted in 743 deaths and incapacitating injuries during the month of July. There were 753 deaths and serious injuries during the month of August.
Under Michigan law, it is illegal to drive with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08 or higher. A drunk driver whose BAC registers at .17 or higher is subject to Michigan’s “super drunk” law. This often results in higher penalties, like increased fines and longer jail sentences.
Law enforcement agencies in the following 26 counties around the state will have a higher number of officers out on the roads during the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign: Allegan, Berrien, Calhoun, Chippewa, Delta, Eaton, Genesee, Grand Traverse, Houghton, Ingham, Jackson, Kalamazoo, Kent, Livingston, Macomb, Marquette, Monroe, Muskegon, Oakland, Ogemaw, Ottawa, Saginaw, St. Clair, Van Buren, Washtenaw and Wayne
A second statewide drunk driving crackdown is planned for August 16th through September 2nd.