More than 400 motorists were arrested for drunk driving during a three-week impaired driving crackdown this spring. Of those arrested, 79 were charged under the state’s high blood alcohol content (BAC) law with having a BAC of .17 or higher.
Law enforcement officers from more than 165 agencies conducted stepped up enforcement aimed at curtailing drunk driving during the Drunk Driving. Over the Limit. Under Arrest. crackdown March 13-April 2. This resulted in 8,083 traffic stops and nearly 4,000 citations or arrests, including 281 for other alcohol- and drug-related charges such as open intoxicants.
“Michigan law enforcement agencies take drunk driving very seriously,” said Michael L. Prince, Office of Highway Safety Planning (OHSP) director. “The increased enforcement also provided opportunities to identify other traffic safety violations and resolve unsolved cases.”
In addition to the 405 drunk driving arrests, 214 misdemeanor and felony arrests were made. Officers also issued 148 seat belt and child restraint, 722 speeding and 425 uninsured motorist citations. Five stolen vehicles were recovered, 326 drivers were found to be driving on suspended licenses and 161 fugitives were arrested during the enforcement effort. OHSP coordinated the effort, which was funded with federal highway safety grants, in 26 counties.
In Kalamazoo County, Richland Township officers stopped a suspected drunk driver. That stop resulted in several arrests including possession of drugs, open intoxicants, minor in possession charges and a confession for a recent home invasion.
In the past, OHSP funded March drunk driving efforts focused only on St. Patrick’s Day. A five-year review of crash data indicated alcohol use and failure to buckle up played a significant role in fatal and serious injury crashes during the month and into early April. March included St. Patrick’s Day, many school spring break periods and college basketball tournament games.
Grant-funded counties included: Allegan, Bay, Berrien, Calhoun, Chippewa, Delta, Genesee, Grand Traverse, Houghton, Ingham, Jackson, Kalamazoo, Kent, Livingston, Macomb, Marquette, Monroe, Muskegon, Oakland, Ottawa, Saginaw, St. Clair, Van Buren, Washtenaw, Wayne and Wexford.