Local law enforcement expanding traffic enforcement initiative

Lt. Geoffrey Freeman with Ohio State Highway Patrol Dayton Post talks Tuesday March 1, 2022 about the new initiative to promote traffic safety, reduce fatal crashes and crime. MARSHALL GORBY\STAFF

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Lt. Geoffrey Freeman with Ohio State Highway Patrol Dayton Post talks Tuesday March 1, 2022 about the new initiative to promote traffic safety, reduce fatal crashes and crime. MARSHALL GORBY\STAFF

More departments focusing on speeding, as it contributes to fatal crashes on local roadways

More local police departments will participate in the Dayton Service Initiative this year, a program developed by the Ohio State Highway Patrol and other agencies to slow down drivers and reduce fatal crashes in Montgomery County.

Butler Twp. Police, Huber Heights Police, Riverside Police, Moraine Police and Vandalia Police announced Tuesday that they will take part in the traffic enforcement effort created last year by OSHP, Dayton Police, the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office and Trotwood Police.

ExploreOhio traffic crash fatalities highest in nearly 20 years

“The reason we undertook this was to reduce fatal crashes and injury crashes,” Ohio State Highway Patrol Lt. Geoff Freeman said.

The Service Initiative began as local law enforcement found an increase in traffic deaths was taking place in Montgomery County. Ohio State Highway Patrol data says 74 people were killed in traffic crashes last year, but there were fewer fatal crashes, 61 last year compared to 63 the year before.

Freeman said increased patrols and education will continue to decrease the number of fatal crashes and save lives.

Last year, law enforcement gave out hundreds of tickets to people during the focused traffic enforcement periods, and many of the tickets issued were to motorists driving more than 20 miles over the speed limit. Freeman said he was not surprised by the speeds, as people driving at high rates in areas like U.S. 35 is common.

“It’s just the same over and over and over again,” Freeman said. “But what did surprise me is that we put out information (about the enforcement) days in advance and we work U.S. 35 quite a bit so it does surprise me in the standpoint that people know they are going to see us out there and they are still driving that fast.”

He said law enforcement will continue to alert the public about when the enforcements will take place, where they will be and what they will be looking for ahead of the initiatives.

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