As is usual in Michigan, several times throughout the calendar year, law enforcement around our state are embarking on another campaign to reduce drunk driving in Michigan. This time, the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign began last week on August 16th and will continue through the upcoming Labor Day weekend.
The reason why this particular period of time was chosen, is because it includes the Labor Day holiday. Research of prior drunk driving statistics has clearly shown that there is an increase in drunk and drugged driving incidents over the holidays and police plan to respond accordingly. While holidays tend to be synonymous with relaxation, friends and family, and good food and drinks, it’s the ‘drinks’ that can lead to trouble.
According to the Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning, fifteen people died in 12 traffic crashes during the 2015 Labor Day holiday period, This is a substantial increase in deaths from the 2014 Labor Day holiday, which only had six deaths. This year, law enforcement is hoping to reduce those numbers from 15 to zero.
The Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign is supported with federal traffic safety funds, and coordinated by the Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning. But in addition to the focus on drunk driving, this particular campaign will also put emphasis on the importance of wearing a seat belt.
Michigan has a primary enforcement law, which allows police officers to stop drivers who are not buckled up. Additionally, state law requires that drivers, front seat passengers, and any passengers 15-years-old and younger seated anywhere in the vehicle be buckled up. Being caught in violation of this law will cost a driver $65.
As attorneys who have represented hundreds of people charged with drunk driving over the decades, we are all too familiar with the tragic consequences of drunk driving. Permanent physical injuries, lost lives, hundreds of thousands of dollars spent in medical bills and attorneys fees, court costs and increased insurance fees. It can be a very difficult time.
So our advice is to always wear your seatbelt and never drive when you’ve been drinking. By that, we mean that you should not drive after any amount of drinking. However, people make mistakes. That’s life. So if you’ve made a mistake and need help dealing with the consequences, we’re here to help 24/7.