The Office of Highway Safety Planning (OHSP) has released statistics for the number of impaired drivers pulled over during the holiday season crackdown.

Nearly 100 police departments and Michigan State Police posts participated in the recent Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign that ran from December 13th through the 31st. In all, there were 8,674 traffic stops made, with 204 drunk drivers arrested. Additionally, officers issued 883 speeding tickets, wrote 84 child restraint citations, and made 93 felony arrests.

OHSP Communications Strategist Kari Arend said that they tried something new in 2018 with several campaigns in the second half of the year. Three Drive Sober of Get Pulled Over campaigns took place, with one in August, one in October, and one in December. Arend said she believes they are effective at reminding people to make the safer and smarter decision to not drive impaired.

Arend said this last campaign was targeted for the holiday season because they know people attend a lot of parties and family events. In Michigan it is illegal to drive with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or higher. Drivers, however, can be arrested at any BAC level if the officer believes they are impaired. This campaign helped serve as a reminder that while recreational marijuana laws were passed in November, drivers can still be arrested for driving high.

Arend says that even outside of these enforcement periods it is important to remember that if you are drinking to have a drive lined up to help you get home safely. Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over is supported by federal traffic safety funds that are coordinated through the OHSP. The next campaign will take place in the summer. (MK)