Troopers target dangerous roadways
Sunday, April 29, 2007
Plain Dealer Reporter
The 68 deaths in accidents on Cuyahoga County roadways last year were the most of any county in the state. This week, state troopers plan to target the problem areas.
Starting Monday and through the next five weeks, the State Highway Patrol will police five stretches of Cuyahoga County highways between 2 and 8 p.m. in an effort to reduce crashes that kill and injure.
The targeted areas of Interstate 480 and Interstate 90 run through Cleveland, Brooklyn, Euclid, Garfield Heights, Maple Heights and Warrensville Heights.
Over the last four years, about 14,000 accidents and 29 deaths occurred on those stretches.
Last year during the same five-week period as this year's enforcement effort, 543 accidents occurred; 76 percent of those crashes happened between 2 and 8 p.m., the patrol said.
Troopers will be visible.
They plan to use their cars, planes, motorcycles and motor carrier enforcement units and will partner with local police.
"We don't hide behind things," said Lt. Tony Bradshaw, patrol spokesman. "We try to be out in the forefront."
Troopers do not usually patrol inside Cuyahoga County, but the high number of deaths on interstates is alarming, Bradshaw said.
Statewide, deaths have dropped in rural areas but not in urban regions. Last year, deaths increased to 189 in Northeast Ohio, an almost 11 percent jump from 2005, the patrol said.
The patrol used a similar program last year in Cincinnati, and it had a "huge impact" on reducing crashes and speeding, Bradshaw said.
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