South Carolina participates in ‘Operation Southern Shield’ to reduce road fatalities
This week, South Carolina and four other Southeastern states are participating in 'Operation Southern Shield,' an initiative to reduce the number of traffic deaths.
Columbia, S.C. (WOLO) — From Memorial Day to Labor Day, the amount of cars on the roadways greatly increases and makes it more dangerous for people on the roads. This week, South Carolina and four other Southeastern states are participating in ‘Operation Southern Shield,’ an initiative to reduce the number of traffic deaths.
“We know during the summertime, there’s typically an increase in fatalities because of the extra traffic that’s on our roadways. It’s not just here in South Carolina, it’s in those other states that’re involved also,” said Cpl. Judd Jones with South Carolina Highway Patrol. “One fatality on our roadway is one fatality too many.”
With more than 500 traffic deaths in South Carolina this year, law enforcement across the state wants to make sure drivers are being careful on the road.
“The number of fatalities so far this year is 531. Compared to 539 at the same period last year, we’re doing a little bit better this year but still that’s too many fatalities on our roadways,” said Cpl. Jones.
As part of the effort, local law enforcement agencies are working with Highway Patrol.
“We’re just trying to get out, have extra patrols out, partnership with local agencies, to reduce fatalities on our roadways,” said Cpl. Jones.
Although officers are keeping an eye out for all factors in a potential accident, one focus of Operation Southern Shield is speed.
“Speed is one of the leading causes of fatalities on our roadways, so we’re looking for speeders. But we’re not only looking speeding, we’re looking for all the things that cause fatalities on our roadways. Failing to give a right away, distracted driving, driving under the influence, those types of things that we see on a road. We’re looking for everything, but it’s a concentration on speeding this week,” said Cpl. Jones.
Operation Southern Shield runs through Saturday. Other states participating include Georgia, Alabama, Florida and Tennessee.