Drunk Driving down in Michigan

Michigan State Police is planning extra patrols for the New Year's weekend. / Mike Sanford

This weekend will be a busy time for law enforcement as they prepare to crack down on drunk driving on New Years Eve. But some recent statistics are showing that they're job may be a little bit easier this year.

The state of Michigan had 264 fatal crashes that involved alcohol in 2010. Its actually an improvement, there were double that amount in 2001 meaning there was a significant decrease. Still, you don't have to go far to find someone affected by drunk driving.

Flint resident Bill Brown says, "I believe it is with all the advertisements they been doing. There doing a good job of letting everybody know there are penalties out there for those types of things."

Its no coincidence, Michigan state police have been working hard. Trooper Joe Cavanaugh says, " Well, through enforcement action, the media and participation from the public."

Police say Michigan had 4,007 alcohol-related crashes in 2010, thats down 38 percent from 6,400 in 2000. A decrease in drunk driving is good news for troopers here especially as we head into the nye holiday this weekend, there will be an increase in enforcement.

Trooper Cavanaugh continues saying, "Well, we're going to be out on patrol. we have extra patrols scheduled in our post area."

The rules are the same, over the limit under arrest. After losing a family member to drunk driving its a comforting thought for Kim Wiley.

She says, "I think its wrong and I don't like it and they should be put behind bars."