Troopers step up patrols this week

Published 9:28 pm Monday, July 27, 2009

By By Adam Robinson
sports editor

Motorists in Alabama and four other states will be joined with an increased number of state troopers, county and city patrolman beginning on Saturday and until the end of the month as the “Take Back Our Highways” campaign begins.
Alabama state troopers along with police and sheriff’s departments from Georgia, Florida, Tennessee and Mississippi will take part in the campaign in an effort to prevent traffic fatalities the week of July 25-31.
This is the first year that Florida and Georgia have participated.
Murphy said troopers have seen improvements in safety on the roadways, but as long as 65 percent of trooper-worked fatalities are not buckled up, and as long as more than 40 percent of trooper-worked fatalities involve alcohol, there are fatalities they can and will try to prevent.
The “Take Back Our Highways” campaigns will place troopers from every rank and division – including those whose duties normally don’t include patrol duties – in uniform and on patrol, Murphy said.
TBOH is a strategic initiative that specifically targets the driving behaviors that cause crashes and contribute to crash severity. These include speeding, failure to yield the right of way, following too closely, driver inattention, and DUI. The campaign will include checkpoints, saturation patrols, line patrols and Task Force Zero details scheduled in each trooper post to address identified threats to roadway  safety.
Last year, the period registered 18 fatalities, the highest number of trooper-worked fatalities in 2008 during a single week.
Locally, Escambia County Sheriff Grover Smith said he and his officers would help out as much as they can.
Smith said a lot of the problems are on the Interstates.
Brewton Police Capt. Randy Nicholson said that the police department would not be participating in the campaign this week due to lack of funds, but he said the department has participated in the past.

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