Maui police are crediting a drop in traffic deaths with more drunken-driving arrests and other traffic enforcement.
The Maui News reported Friday that Lt. Ricky Uedoi, commander of the police traffic section, says the numbers are a direct reflection of the work of the officers.
There have been 13 traffic deaths in Maui County this year, down about one-third compared with previous years. Uedoi says four were alcohol related and one was drug related. That’s down from 20 deaths during the same time frame in 2012.
Mothers Against Drunk Driving says about half the traffic deaths in all of Hawaii involve alcohol.
Uedoi says the number of DUI arrests in Maui is up 20 percent to 943 through the end of October, compared with 786 arrests during the same time frame last year.
DUI Task Force Officer Justin Mauliola said many DUI arrests in the popular tourist area of Lahaina aren’t tourists, but are residents.
“They live right down the road, so they think they can make it home,” Mauliola said. “And it’s usually when it happens.”
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