LANSING, Mich. (WOOD) - Traffic crashes and injuries in Michigan were down in 2012, but fatalities increased.
Fatalities were up 5% over 2011, from 889 to 936, according to the Michigan Department of State Police (MSP) Criminal Justice Information Center.
The number of traffic crashes fell 4% to 273,891 from 284,049 in 2011. Injuries were down 2% to 70,519 from 71,796 in 2011.
Increases were noted in motorcyclist fatalities, up 18% over 2011, and alcohol- and drug-involved fatalities, up 3% to 281 and 6% to 135 respectively.
"Michigan's increase in traffic fatalities mirrors what has taken place across the country," Col. Kriste Kibbey Etue, MSP director, said in a news release. "Despite an increase in traffic deaths last year, the long-term picture indicates this is the fifth year in a row Michigan had fewer than 1,000 traffic deaths. Ten years ago, there were nearly 1,300 people who died as a result of traffic crashes in our state."
Despite increases in traffic fatalities and alcohol and drug involvement, teen fatalities declined 14%, from 99 in 2011 to 85 in 2012.
The state has experienced significant decreases in traffic crashes during the past decade, from 395,515 in 2002 to 273,891 in 2012. Similarly, alcohol- and/or drug-involved fatalities have dropped from 463 in 2002 to 342 in 2012.
In other areas:
- Cellphone-involved crashes decreased 9%, from 821 in 2011 to 748 in 2012. Cellphone-involved fatal crashes increased from six in 2011 to eight in 2012. (Michigan cannot track crashes involving texting specifically)
- Commercial motor vehicle-involved fatalities increased 10%, from 73 in 2011 to 80 in 2012
- Motorcyclist fatalities increased 18%, from 109 in 2011 to 129 in 2012
- Bicyclist fatalities were down 17%, from 24 in 2011 to 20 in 2012
- Pedestrian fatalities decreased 5%, from 140 in 2011 to 133 in 2012
- The number of crashes involving deer declined 9%, from 53,592 in 2011 to 48,918 in 2012
Fred Glespie was found not guilty in the death of three children who died in an apartment fire.
Police are looking for the suspect in an armed robbery that occurred at a gas station in Plainwell Thursday night.
The rink will be open that day from 3-9 p.m.