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    Both state and local police offer safety campaigns in June

    Virginia State Police is one of six agencies that will once again participate in a traffic safety enforcement initiative of U.S. Route 15.

    Operation Border to Border, a collaborative effort of state police from Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Pennsylvania, Maryland and New York, seeks to decrease and prevent traffic crashes, injuries and fatalities along the 791 mile highway. For three days, officers from those six state police forces will work together to conduct saturation patrols, sobriety check points and other law enforcement measures. The project begins at 12:01 a.m. on June 13 and runs until midnight on June 15.

    This is Operation Border to Border's third year targeting Route 15. The project is connected to the nationwide traffic-safety effort, Drive to Save Lives. Last year, 684 speeders, 14 reckless drivers and 28 impaired drivers were cited, along with 260 seat belt violations, 11 child restraint violations and 147 motor carrier violations. Additionally, 25 people were arrested for felonies and misdemeanors, including 4 drug arrests. There were no traffic fatalities during the 2013 campaign.

    Route 15, which spans from Waterboro, S.C. to Corning, N.Y., has 230 miles in Virginia. Over the course of 2013, the Virginia portion of the highway had 1,032 traffic crashes.

    Move Over

    In addition to the statewide initiative, June is also Move Over Awareness Month in Loudoun County.

    The purpose of the month is to remind drivers about "move over" and "move it" laws. According to the law, drivers are required to move over one lane, if possible, if an emergency vehicle on the side of the road is displaying emergency lights. If traffic is to congested to merge, drivers are required to slow down and be prepared to stop. Violating the law, a Class 1 misdemeanor passed in 2002, is punishable by possible jail time and a $2,500 fine.

    The "move it" law requires drivers involved in fender benders with no injuries to move cars from travel lanes.


    I applaud the State Police and their efforts to improve traffic safety.  They actually pair awareness with enforcement and do make a significant positive impact.  The Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office on the other hand suffers from mismanagement when it comes to traffic enforcement and the Sheriff would rather put out a press release touting some phony claim to fame rather than put serious consideration into a traffic enforcement plan that has bite.  Traffic fatalities and pedestrians struck are the weekly norm in Loudoun rather that the infrequent tragedy.  The LCSO traffic unit and Patrol Division are staffed by exceptional men an women capable of making a difference.  Under the “What can the County do for me rather than what can I do for the County.” approach personally favored by Sheriff Chapman things will only get worse.  This leadership void in the Sheriff’s Office, is systematic and reaches far beyond traffic enforcement.  At least we have the State Police when it comes to REAL traffic enforcement.

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