Washtenaw County Sheriff Patrols Increase for St. Patrick's Day, Spring Break
Officers from local law enforcement agencies will crack down on impaired driving during March 15 through April 8.
The Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Office, along with several local law enforcement agencies, will increase patrols to help keep drunk drivers off the road beginning St. Patrick's Day weekend.
The special traffic enforcement period takes place from March 15 through April 8, which includes St. Patrick's Day, the NCAA men's and women's basketball tournaments, and high school and college spring breaks.
Officers with the University of Michigan Department of Public Safety, Pittsfield Township Department of Public Safety, Saline Police Department, and the Northfield Township Police Department will work more than 200 hours in Washtenaw County designated for drunken driving enforcement. This special traffic enforcement is paid by federal traffic safety funds administrated by the Office of Highway Safety Planning.
Alcohol-involved crashes accounted for 42 percent of all fatal crashes in Washtenaw County in 2011. Additionally, alcohol- and drug-involved fatalities have seen a steady decline in the past five years from 440 in 2006 to 319 in 2011, a 27 percent reduction according to Fatality Analysis Reporting System data.
A University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute study shows the reduction has saved more than $520 million in taxes.
In Michigan, a motorist can be arrested for drunk driving with a .08 blood alcohol content or higher. A drunk-driving conviction carries with it an assortment of penalties, including court costs and fines, increased car insurance rates, legal fees and $2,000 in driver responsibilities fees.