State Police Report Traffic Fatalities Increased During Busy Holiday Period; Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over Campaign Continues Through December

Contact: Spl/F/Lt. Jim Flegel, MSP State Services Bureau, 517-284-3724

December 28, 2018

Preliminary reports by the Michigan State Police (MSP) show 10 people lost their lives in nine separate traffic crashes during the 2018 Operation C.A.R.E. (Crash Awareness and Reduction Efforts) Lifesaver Weekend. The fatalities more than double in comparison to the four people who lost their lives in four separate traffic crashes during the 2017 initiative.  Of the 10 fatalities, four were pedestrians, three of the fatal crashes involved alcohol, and four of the occupants were either not wearing seat belts or restraint use was unknown. 

The 2018 Operation C.A.R.E. Lifesaver Weekend ran from 12:01 a.m. on Friday, Dec. 21, through 11:59 p.m., on Sunday, Dec. 23, 2018. These preliminary numbers reflect fatalities reported to the MSP as of 1 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 26, 2018.

“This long running traffic safety initiative focuses on dangerous driving decisions and behaviors that result in serious injury and fatal traffic crashes,” stated Spl/F/Lt. Jim Flegel, State Services Bureau.  “The New Year holiday will also be a busy travel period and we will continue traffic enforcement through the national Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over impaired driving traffic safety campaign, which ends on Dec. 31, 2018.” 

Operation C.A.R.E. is a nationwide initiative aimed at reducing traffic crashes and fatalities on highways across the country.  It began in 1977 as a collaborative effort between the MSP and the Indiana State Police. Today Operation C.A.R.E. is one of the nation’s longest running traffic safety initiatives and includes state and highway patrol agencies from all 50 states, as well as some American territories and Canadian provinces. Operation C.A.R.E. also includes participation from police agencies affiliated with the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP).