‘Operation Southern Slow Down’ to launch in 5 states this week
Law enforcement agencies reported a substantial increase in vehicles traveling at speeds above 100 miles per hour in the last two years.
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - A campaign called Operation Southern Slow Down will launch Monday, July 18, in five southeastern states, including Tennessee. The operation will be a team effort to stop the increase of people driving over the speed limit, a spokesperson from the Tennessee Highway Safety Office said.
According to authorities, those “who feel the need for speed better hit the brakes or be ready to see blue lights in their rear-view mirror” during the operation that lasts from July 18 to July 24.
“Speeding drivers are almost three times more likely to be involved in fatal or serious-injury crashes,” said Buddy Lewis, Director of the Tennessee Office of Highway Safety. “Speeding increases the risk of losing control of your vehicle and threatens the safety of everyone around you. All we ask is for voluntary compliance to ensure everyone can make it home safely.”
During the speed enforcement and education campaign, officials said that state troopers and local law enforcement officers would conduct concentrated enforcement on interstates and state highways in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, and Tennessee.
This comes after law enforcement agencies reported a substantial increase in vehicles traveling at speeds above 100 miles per hour in the last two years.
“The majority of people driving in a safe and legal manner should not have to worry about their safety from selfish drivers who show no regard for their safety and the safety of others with their disregard for speed limits and other highway safety laws,” said Allen Poole, Director of the Georgia Governor’s Office of Highway Safety. “Georgia is once again ready to work with our friends in our neighboring states to protect all road users by putting these dangerous drivers on the shoulder of the road and issuing them a ticket.”
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and THSO, speed was a factor in 29 percent of total traffic fatalities in the nation in 2020, which was a three percent increase from the previous year. The number of people killed in crashes involving speeding increased by 17 percent in 2020 than in 2019.
A THSO spokesperson said over four years, Operation Southern Slow Down reported a 14 percent reduction in speed-related traffic deaths from the week before to the week of the campaign.
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