Memorial Day Weekend Leads to Traffic Accidents, DUIs in Minnesota

At least four people were killed and roughly 360 individuals were arrested for DWI over the Memorial Day holiday in Minnesota, according to preliminary data provided by the Minnesota Department of Public Safety (DPS) Office of Traffic Safety.

CC image Wikipedia.org

The total number of traffic fatalities matched the four fatalities over the same weekend a year ago.  Minnesota has seen a wide range of traffic deaths over Memorial Day weekend dating back to 2008.  There were no deaths on the roads during the holiday weekend in 2011, while there were 13 reported causalities in 2009.  Of the 28 traffic related deaths during Memorial Day weekend since 2008, 14 have been drunk driving related.

The four fatal crashes took place in Douglas County, LeSueur County, Hennepin County, and Morrison County.  The victims ranged in age from 19 to 81.

DUI’s Down From St. Patrick’s Day

Although more than 350 people were arrested for driving under the influence during the holiday weekend, the total is less than the 400 reported arrests over St. Patrick’s Day weekend this year.

It may not be surprising that more people decided to celebrate the Irish holiday by getting behind the wheel after having a few too many drinks, but there was plenty of law enforcement on the roads this weekend, as Memorial Day fell during the annual Click it or Ticket campaign.

The campaign, which began on May 20 and runs through June 2, has already netted 4,316 seat belt violations.  Law enforcement officials have increased their daily patrols, and they are keeping a closer eye on drivers and their passengers to ensure everyone is buckled up.

We talked about the importance of wearing your seatbelt when you’re in a car during a blog post last week, but it’s extremely important considering the Office of Traffic Safety has released updated fatal crash statistics for 2013.  So far, 112 people have been killed on Minnesota roads this year.  That is 13 more than last year, when 99 traffic fatalities were reported after the Memorial Day weekend.

Related sources: Minnesota DPS, HometownSource.com

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Avery Appelman is a criminal defense lawyer and the founder of Appelman Law Firm. While his practice is primarily recognized for its work with DWI and related offenses, he has 16 years of experience working with clients on drug, assault, theft, traffic, criminal sexual conduct, and prostitution charges.

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