Drunk Driving / Seatbelt Crackdowns Continue

The Michigan State Police is continuing increased traffic patrols through midnight tonight as part of the nationwide safety initiative, Operation C.A.R.E. (Combined Accident Reduction Effort), that seeks to improve traffic safety during heavily traveled holidays.

“Labor Day weekend is traditionally one of the most traveled weekends of the summer and we are reminding motorists to drive in a safe and responsible manner,” said Col. Kriste Kibbey Etue, director of the MSP. ” Troopers will be aggressively looking for drunk drivers, safety belt violations as well as any other unsafe driving practice that may occur on Michigan’s roadways during this Labor Day weekend.”

The official Labor Day holiday weekend started at 6 p.m., Friday, September 2, and runs through midnight, Monday, September 5, 2011. Last year there were 17 fatal traffic crashes, which resulted in 21 deaths over the Labor Day holiday weekend. Of the 21 victims killed, 10 were not wearing seat belts, and alcohol was a factor in 11 of the crashes.

Operation C.A.R.E. began in 1977 as a collaborative effort between the MSP and Indiana State Police, and is one of the nation’s longest-running traffic safety initiatives. Today, it includes state police and highway patrol agencies from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Ontario Provincial Police, Quebec Police Force and the Virgin Islands.