Mich. State Police crack down on aggressive driving

WEST MICHIGAN (NEWSCHANNEL 3) - Right now, police are cracking down on aggressive drivers in West Michigan.

Since January, Michigan State Police have responded to 534 crashes in Calhoun County. More than half were on I-94, between I-69 and the Kalamazoo/Calhoun county line.

From speeding, to tailgating, to erratic driving, Newschannel 3 dug in to the day-to-day dangers from the inside of a patrol car.

State Police tell Newschannel 3 that that particular stretch of I-94 is the most dangerous because there is so much traffic between Kalamazoo and Battle Creek.

Combine that with speed and people not paying full attention, and it's easy for a crash to happen.

On Wednesday afternoon, Michigan State Police were out in full force.

In an unmarked car, we quickly spot an aggressive driver along I-94.

First Lieutenant James Coleman, with the Michigan State Police starts following, and chases the driver for several miles, watching as he weaves in and out of traffic without using turn signals.

He finally gets the hint and pulls over.

"See that black car there, the Ford Escape, that was me," he tells the driver. "You drove by me at a high rate of speed and I couldn't even catch you, and I was going almost 95."

15 minutes later, we're chasing a black pickup truck after he passes us on the right and glares at us for driving the speed limit.

That's all it took for police to take action.

"The intent of why we're out here is to address the aggressive driving," Lt. Coleman said.

It turns out the driver was late for work, but he graciously took a minute to talk to us, saying that the incident would change his driving habits.

A response like that is exactly what State Police are hoping their aggressive driving crackdown will do--make people think twice about speeding, tailgating, and cutting people off.

According to State Police, the worst time for crashes is during the evening commute: between 3 and 8 p.m., especially on Thursdays and Fridays.

Nearly 80 percent of drivers admit to speeding on the highway, and a third of them drive at least 10 over the limit.

You get pulled over for that, and the ticket will cost $125.

The aggressive driving crackdown is expected to continue until the end of August.