INDIANAPOLIS — There will be extra patrols on the roads Wednesday looking out even more than normal for drivers going too fast and driving dangerous.
Indiana is taking part in a six-state “Speed Awareness Day” enforcement campaign.
Officers say they are not just looking to give people tickets but hoping to educate them on the importance of slowing down and driving safer.
“We have a responsibility as drivers on the road to slow down, pay attention to what you’re doing,” said Officer William Young with IMPD.
“We want folks to take your time, arrive alive.”
Federal grants were given to law enforcement agencies to pay for overtime patrols throughout the day.
It’s happening in Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin.
Both nationally, and in Indiana, there has been a drastic increase in deadly crashes and speeding-related deaths since the start of the pandemic.
2020 saw an 18-percent increase in people who lost their lives on the roads in crashes that involved speeding.
Just this past weekend in Indianapolis there were several deadly crashes. IMPD hopes this operation will help reduce that.
“As you can tell over the weekend, we had several accidents that resulted in fatalities… So, hopefully, our agency participating in this particular grant will somewhat curb some of that and be more of an informative piece to allow our officers to address speeders,” said Officer Young.
They are also looking out for things like impaired driving, not wearing a seat belt, and other dangerous driving behaviors.
“This grant is kind of, I’d like to say, right on time. It allows our officers to be able to participate in said grants to not only be an enforcement tool but to be an educational piece for those… It allows us to focus on high areas where we’ve seen a number of crashes…. so, I’m glad our agency is being able to participate.”
Officer Young recommends you leave in enough time to get where you’re going safely without speeding.
“So many times, I’ve made traffic stops where folks are speeding and I walk up to the car and the first thing they say is, ‘Officer I’m sorry. I’m running late for work.’ And I always say hey well, ‘It’s better to get there safely than harming someone.'”
Law enforcement says speeding increases the potential for drivers to lose control of their vehicles. If you encounter a speeding driver, they say you should allow them to pass by safely steering out of the way.