Warning motorists to "Get sober or get pulled over," area police mounted a campaign against drunk drivers during December. Their efforts, according to the Minneapolis Police Department, netted 104 arrests.
Thousands of Twin Cities residents drive to and from area bars every weekend.
“DWI patrols are effective to reducing drunk driving activity, but it is clear that the issue remains a real problem that puts our roads in danger,” Minneapolis police Sgt. Rich Lee said in a written statement.
Police promised "enhanced" DWI patrols through the end of 2013.
According to police, drunk driving crashes accounted for 37 deaths and 106 serious injuries in Hennepin County from 2009 through 2011. 19,887 drivers were arrested for drunk driving in the county during the same period. Each year in the state, police say, around 30,000 people are arrested for DWI. Great strides have been made in reducing the number of drunk driving crashes over the last 40 years, officials from the state Department of Public Safety, crediting beefed up enforcement efforts.
Police also urged drivers to take steps themselves to reduce the number of drunk driving crashes, by designating a sober driver, buckling up to reduce the risk of injury if struck by a drunk driver, and by calling 911 to report drunk drivers.
“To make progress and limit the tragedies that drunk driving causes, we need to take the simple, preventable steps, and step one is to always plan ahead for a sober ride," Lee said.