SOUTH CHARLESTON, West Virginia – The West Virginia State Police (WVSP) relies heavily on grants from the Governor’s Highway Safety Program in order to address highway safety concerns across the state.
The funds available from these grants allow Troopers to work special patrols on their days off, during vacation time, before a regular shift begins or after a regular shift has ended.
Typically, these patrols last between two and six hours. Each grant specifically defines the type of patrol to be conducted, whether it is distracted driving enforcement, work zone safety enforcement, seatbelt and child restraint enforcement, speed patrols, or DUI enforcement.
For the past few years, the West Virginia State Police has reportedly taken a targeted approach in regards to special patrols.
The WVSP Traffic Section has reviewed areas of high DUI and fatality rates across the State and encouraged patrols to be conducted in those areas. Furthermore, they try to conduct these patrols on holidays, during peak traveling seasons, and during peak traveling hours, such as when motorists are commuting to and from work.
As a result of this targeted approach, West Virginia has experienced a significant reduction in the number traffic fatalities and fatal car crashes over the past few years. In 2012, law enforcement agencies across the state reported 339 fatalities, occurring in 318 fatal car crashes. In 2013, the number dropped slightly to 332 fatalities, occurring in 305 fatal car crashes. In 2014, there were 272 fatalities, occurring in 242 fatal crashes. In 2015, the downward trend continued for fatalities (270), although there was a slight increase in number of fatal crashes (249).
The West Virginia State Police would like to thank the Governor’s Highway Safety Program, the West Virginia Department of Transportation and other law enforcement agencies throughout the state for their continued dedication to improving highway safety.