CENTREVILLE, MD â€“ More than 30 police officers from six police departments will be combining forces tomorrow in a focused enforcement effort on the Upper Shore aimed at reducing traffic fatalities.
â€śObey the Sign or Pay the Fineâ€ť will commence May 8, 2008 on highways throughout Kent and Queen Anneâ€™s counties. Police departments participating include the Maryland State Police, Maryland Transportation Authority Police, Queen Anneâ€™s County Sheriffâ€™s Office, Kent County Sheriffâ€™s Office, Centreville Police and the Chestertown Police Department.
Coordinated by the Centreville Barracks commander, Lt. Dwayne Boardman, the goal of this operation is to remind motorists that speeding and other dangerous driving behaviors directly contribute to traffic fatalities and injuries. â€śWe are not going to tolerate the continuing high speeds we have been seeing on these highways,â€ť Lt. Boardman said. â€śIt appears that drivers are becoming complacent with those speeds and we intend to remind them just what the speed limits are through these areas.â€ť
Police will be using radar, VASCAR, Lidar, and other enforcement tools to enforce the speed limits. They will be patrolling in marked and unmarked patrol cars, as well as on motorcycles and in at least one â€śunconventionalâ€ť vehicle.
Enforcement efforts will focus on Rt. 50, Rt. 301, Rt. 213, and Rt. 20. The State Highway Administration will be using fixed and mobile sign boards to remind motorists to â€śObey the Sign or Pay the Fineâ€ť throughout the enforcement campaign.
The timing of this operation comes after careful study by Lt. Boardman and his staff. In 2007, the State Police Centreville Barracks investigated 11 crashes in Queen Anneâ€™s County involving 13 deaths and four crashes in Kent County involving five deaths. Twelve of the 15 fatal crashes occurred during the afternoon and early evening hours, mostly on week days. Sixty percent of the fatal crashes occurred on Routes 301, 50, or 213. Police are seeing similar trends continuing into 2008 and want to stop them now.
The combined enforcement effort is expected to continue periodically throughout the summer. Not all of the enforcement operations will be announced.