Michigan authorities are pleased to see that the state is trending toward a lower number of drug and/or alcohol related deaths this year versus last year.

So far this year the statewide number of traffic related fatalities caused by alcohol is down almost 11 percent from last year. So to are injuries related vehicle crashes caused by drugs or alcohol. In the most interesting aspect of the recent statistics, fatalities caused by drug-related vehicle accidents are down more than 17 percent from last year. That is nearly double the decline in DUI related traffic fatalities.

Police enforcement of existing state laws concerning driving under the influence of alcohol are certainly having an impact. There have also been a number of public services messages and safety campaigns geared toward educating drivers about the dangers of driving under the influence of any mind altering substance and the severe penalties for any one who does.

If this trend in declines continues for Michigan more drivers will not only survive to drive another day, but so will the innocent victims of drug or alcohol related crashes.

Overall, traffic deaths from alcohol and/or drug use decreased in Michigan by 10.6 percent, from 357 in 2010 to 319 last year, according to the Office of Highway Safety Planning.
Traffic deaths involving alcohol dropped 3 percent, from 283 to 274 across the state.
Injuries also decreased across the state, from 6,175 to 6,086, while drug-related traffic deaths fell almost 17 percent, from 153 in 2010 to 127 last year, police said.