September 22, 2014

Undersheriff says holiday traffic issues not out of the ordinary

By Tim Barnum|Staff writer
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ARENAC COUNTY — Although out-of-towners crowded the county this Independence Day weekend, Arenac County Undersheriff Don McIntyre says that while there was an increase in traffic stops, the weekend was typical for a holiday.

“Obviously, we have more accidents on a holiday weekend, but I didn’t see a dramatic change. … We had 35 complaints over the weekend,” McIntyre said. “We (county) had five total accidents. … One non-serious injury.”

However, while the holiday weekend didn’t bring about great chaos, the sheriff’s office is still following up on some cases that occurred over the weekend.

“We had a couple of rollovers we’re investigating right now where the driver fled the scene,” McIntyre said, adding this usually implies the driver of the vehicle was intoxicated.

But, the Undersheriff says, fleeing a scene can actually bring a more harsh punishment than reporting it immediately, even if the driver is inebriated.

“A rollover accident where there is alcohol involved is a 93-day misdemeanor, with no injuries,” McIntyre said. “When you flee the scene of an accident, it’s actually a one-year misdemeanor.

“Sometimes it pays to stay and call it in, especially if there’s an injury.”

According to the incident log from Arenac County Central Dispatch, from July 3-5, there were 68 traffic stops and four operating while intoxicated arrests.

And since it was Independence Day, illegal fireworks were also reported. The dispatch log showed seven complaints of illegal fireworks.

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