Wright County is going to be one of 13 Minnesota counties targeted with increased DWI enforcement patrols thanks to a program enacted by the Minnesota Office of Traffic Safety – starting today (Aug. 14) and continuing through Labor Day (Sept. 7).
The OTS targeted the counties that had experienced the most alcohol related deaths, injuries and crashes over the five-year period of 2013-17. The 13 counties based on the crash, injury and death data are Hennepin, Ramsey, Anoka, St. Louis, Dakota, Stearns, Washington, Sherburne, Olmsted, Wright, Otter Tail, Cass and Rice counties.
When it came to alcohol-related traffic fatalities in the five-year period studied, Wright County was fourth with 13 deaths – behind only Hennepin (52), Ramsey (17) and St. Louis (15).
The 13 counties (of 87 in Minnesota), accounted for 829 of the state’s 1,909 traffic-related deaths, 4,282 of the 7,228 serious injuries and 80,696 of the 125,701 DWI arrests made in the five-year period.
In a press conference held Thursday, OTS Director Mike Hanson said that drinking and driving remains a significant issue in Minnesota and Labor Day ranks third in DWI arrests for any day of the year – behind only Halloween and the Fourth of July.
“There is no excuse to wind up in the back seat of a squad car, an ambulance or even a hearse,” Hanson said. “It takes good, smart decision-making in order to prevent these tragedies from happening.”
To see links to the top 13 dangerous drunk driving counties and the ranking of counties for alcohol-involved incidents, click here: https://dps.mn.gov/divisions/ots/law-enforcement/Pages/13-Counties-Targeted-for-Enhanced-DWI-Patrols.aspx