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The Genesee County Sheriff’s Office is not naïve enough to think that drunk driving has been eliminated; but the fact that arrests were at their lowest in 20 years in 2012 according to a recently-released annual report, it’s looking at that as a success.

Chief Deputy Gordon Dibble says it’s been a county-wide effort.

“I think the fact that our DWI arrest numbers are the lowest they’ve been in 20 years reflect the effort we’ve put in here; not just law enforcement by organizations like STOP DWI, MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving), SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions) and all the other groups that have worked hard to try to get this number down," he said. "We think a combination of enforcement, education and what our courts are doing are having an effect.”

The data indicates there were 136 DWI arrests in the county in 2012 overall. Chief Deputy Dibble says there’s much room for improvement.

“Some of the drunk driver are staying off the main state highways and finding a way home on some of the secondary roads," he said. "This year we want to concentrate some more efforts on the secondary roads and possibly run some road checks on those which you don’t normally see; usually you see them on the state highways.”

The department also wants to be able to stop more people from driving under the influence of drugs. Chief Deputy Dibble says the Sheriff’s Office has six drug recognition experts on staff who are specially trained to detect people under the influence of drugs.

He says the county STOP DWI department has also provided extra funding for further enforcement in the form of more saturation patrols.

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