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New patrol program targets speeders



On April 9, law enforcement agencies started cracking down on speeders with a new program called “Slow Down or Pay Up.”

Officers in 153 Washington agencies, including Washington State Patrol, Clallam County Sheriff’s Department, Port Angeles Police Department and the Sequim Police Department have extra patrols on local roads, state highways and interstate freeways to prevent speeding.
The extra speeding patrols run on weekends from April 9-May 1.

Speeding kills
From 2004-2008, 1,166 people died in Washington from speeding-involved crashes, according to Washington’s Fatality Analysis Reporting System. Forty percent of traffic deaths on roadways involve speeding.

In Clallam County, 24 people died from speeding, 2.1 percent of the deaths, and in Jefferson County, nine people died, 0.8 percent of the total.

“Slow Down or Pay Up” runs in conjunction with the Strategic Highway Safety Plan — Target Zero — with the goal of zero deaths or serious injuries from traffic crashes in Washington by 2030.

“Washington’s commitment to improving traffic safety through Target Zero has produced significant results in the last four years,” said Lowell Porter, director of the Washington Traffic Safety Commission.

“By identifying the state’s traffic safety priorities and investing our resources based on data, proven strategies, best practices and strong partnerships, we can again this year realize fewer deaths and serious injuries resulting from speeding.”

Keeping safe
The safety commission encourages drivers to follow these safe driving tips:
• Obey the speed limit
• Adjust your speed for the road and weather conditions; slow down when it’s rainy, icy or foggy
• Don’t tailgate. Keep at least one car length between you and the car in front for every 10 mph of speed
• In heavy traffic, slow down and watch for sudden stops or erratic driving by other drivers
• Slow down if there is limited sight distance
 
For more on the Washington Traffic Safety Commission, go to www.wtsc.wa.gov.
For more on Target Zero, go to www.targetzero.com.

Graphic courtesy of Washington Traffic Safety Commission
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