With traffic-related deaths and injuries on the rise, the Garden Grove Police Department is launching a year-long program of special enforcements and public awareness efforts, the agency announced in a news release Thursday.
The program is being funded by a $249,100 grant awarded to the GGPD by the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS), the Nov. 3 news release said.
“We have seen a tremendous increase in the number of fatal traffic collisions during 2016,” Garden Grove Police Chief Todd Elgin said. “Our department is committed to keeping our roads safe, educating the public on the risks of distracted driving and ensuring impaired drivers are located and arrested.”
The Garden Grove Police Department will use the funding as part of the city’s ongoing commitment to keeping its roadways safe and improving the quality of life through both enforcement and education.
After falling to a 10-year low in 2010, the number of persons killed in traffic-related incident climbed nearly 17 percent across the state last year, with 3,176 killed in 2015, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
So far this year, there have been 11 fatal traffic accidents in Garden Grove.
Particularly alarming is the six-year rise in pedestrian and bicycle fatalities, along with the growing dangers of distracting technologies and the emergence of drug-impaired driving as a major problem, the news release said.
The grant funding will provide opportunities to combat these and other devastating problems such as drunk driving, speeding and crashes at intersections.
“Years of research tell us that enforcement and education work best jointly to combat unsafe driving,” said OTS Director Rhonda Craft. “This grant brings both tactics together, with the Office of Traffic Safety and the Garden Grove Police Department working in concert to help keep the streets and highways safe across Garden Grove and the state.”
Activities that the grant will fund include:
— DUI checkpoints
— DUI saturation patrols
— Bicycle and pedestrian safety enforcement
— Motorcycle safety enforcement
— Distracted driving enforcement
— Seat belt and child safety seat enforcement
— Speed, red light, and stop sign enforcement
— Warrant service operations targeting multiple DUI offenders
— Compilation of DUI “Hot Sheets,” identifying worst-of-the-worst DUI
— Specialized DUI and drugged driving training such as Standardized Field
Sobriety Testing (SFST), Advanced Roadside Impaired Driving Enforcement
(ARIDE), and Drug Recognition Evaluator (DRE)
— Educational presentations