State officials: 482 drunken drivers arrested in crackdown

Charles E. Ramirez
The Detroit News

More than 480 motorists were arrested for drunken driving during a crackdown late last year, state officials said Monday.

Seventy-one of the 482 motorists arrested during the "Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over" crackdown were charged under Michigan's high blood alcohol content law, according to the state's Office of Highway Safety. The crackdown ran between Nov. 22 and Dec. 10, 2017.

Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning logo

“Drunk driving can have harsh consequences for offenders, their families and potential victims,” Michael Prince, the Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning's director, said in a statement Monday. “We appreciate the law enforcement officers in every section of the state who are dedicated to preventing tragedies. Their diligence reduces fatalities and injuries on our roadways.”

Under Michigan law, any motorist with a blood alcohol content of 0.08 or more is considered drunk. Penalties for the first offense can include restrictions on driving privileges, up to 93 days in jail and a fine of up to $500.

The state's high blood alcohol content law calls for stiffer penalties for motorists with alcohol levels of 0.17 or more.

Officials also said law enforcement agencies across the state also issued 2,281 citations for speeding and 663 citations for driving with a suspended license.

In 2016, the last year for which complete data is available, 32,610 drivers were arrested for impaired driving.

A division of the Michigan State Police and based in Lansing, the Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning works with law enforcement, courts and communities to coordinate federally funded activities and initiatives relating to the human behavioral aspects of highway safety.