The State Police of Michigan have announced a Labor Day Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over anti-drunk driving campaign.
The 2016 annual state-wide joint DUI task force campaign is already underway, and continues through September 5, 2016. For this particular campaign, Michigan State Police are joining with local and county police and Sheriff departments to maximize drunk driving patrols.
According to the National Highway Safety Administration’s Standardized Field Sobriety Training Manual, as many as 10 percent of drivers on the road during late night and weekend hours may be driving while intoxicated. During certain holidays the figure may go even higher. Furthermore, that a typical drunk driving offender drives drunk about 80 times per year.
The same manual also suggests that general deterrence of DUI is based on the public’s fear of being arrested. Consequently, law enforcement must arrest enough drunk drivers enough of the time to convince the public they will be arrested if they continue to drive drunk. It is with this in mind that Michigan’s current anti-drunk driving campaign was launched. Last year’s campaign netted 351 drunk drivers out of a total of about 3,000 tickets issued.
According to the Michigan State Police website, the 2016 Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign is part of the grant-funded impaired driving and seat belt enforcement programs started under Gov. Rick Snyder in 2013.
This means that many of the traffic stops during this 2016 campaign will be based on the police officer believing that the occupants are not wearing their seat belts. However, even if the police officer is wrong about your seat belt, once stopped, the police will be free to continue their investigation, and raise it to the level of an intoxicated driving investigation if they believe drugs or alcohol are involved.
The legal limit in Michigan is .08 for alcohol, and zero tolerance for certain drugs like marijuana. Most people can get to a .08 bodily alcohol level with as few as three drinks. However, you can be arrested and convicted for drunk driving in Michigan even at levels below .08, so if you’re going to drink during this holiday season, your best bet is to find and use a designated driver.