Speeding patrols will focus on four locations
Sites for spring program based on accidents, tickets


Published Thursday, October 12, 2006

Sangamon County deputies will be concentrating patrols in four trouble spots near Springfield in spring in an effort to get speeders to slow down.

“A lot of young people are injured in traffic crashes or rollover accidents,” Sheriff Neil Williamson said Wednesday. “Maybe we won’t write any tickets, but we can at least get people to slow down and obey the traffic laws (when they see the squad cars). That’s what we’re after. We are not out there to see how many tickets we can write.”

The four sites were chosen based on the number of injury accidents and tickets issued there.

A $69,000 grant to pay overtime for deputies working the traffic details is from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, distributed via the Illinois Department of Transportation.

Deputies will begin the initiative in March and work through June, then resume in August and September.

Which days the deputies will be working has not been decided, but they will patrol the four areas frequently.

One of the targeted locations, the 4000 to 11000 blocks of Old Jacksonville Road, is in the Sangamon County Board district of Craig Hall.

Hall agreed that speeding is a problem on the popular commuting route.

“You are out in the middle of nowhere, and people think they can get away with it,” he said.

Williamson said the deputies working traffic details will be available to back up other personnel on a regular shift in an emergency.

Williamson said he hopes that by telling people where the extra deputies will be, more motorists might slow down to avoid getting tickets. Another reason to slow down, especially in the rural areas, is because of the planting and harvest seasons.

“We have slow-moving vehicles out there that people can come up on real fast. That’s always a concern,” Williamson said.

John Reynolds can be reached at 788-1524 or john.reynolds@sj-r.com.