Police target aggressive driving

Photo by Amy Cherry – A City of St. Marys police officer pulls over a driver in downtown St. Marys. Monday kicked off a seven-week initiative by local at state police targeting motorists exhibiting aggressive driving.Photo by Amy Cherry – Pennsylvania State Police Trooper Bruce Morris and City of St. Marys Police Chief Tom Nicklas represent just two of the 235 municipal agencies participating in the statewide aggressive driving enforcement program through August 26.
By: 
Amy Cherry
Staff Writer

The City of St. Marys Police Department are among the 235 municipal agencies statewide, along with the Pennsylvania State Police, who are cracking down on aggressive drivers now through August 26.
The Pennsylvania Aggressive Driving Enforcement and Education Program aims to reduce the number of aggressive driving-related crashes, injuries and fatalities in state. The program, funded by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, kicked off on Monday.
“The City of St. Marys Police Department, and by extension the citizens of St. Marys, are absolutely benefited by our officers’ enforcement efforts during each aggressive driving wave,” said Chief of Police Thomas J. Nicklas. “Motorists in St. Marys were identified as being involved in a higher-than-normal rate of collisions involving aggressive driving behaviors. These waves allow officers to concentrate solely on these behaviors in an effort to reduce the number of collisions of this kind and make driving in our community safer for everyone.”
According to PennDOT data, in 2017 aggressive driving was listed as a cause in 60 percent of Elk County crashes.
In St. Marys alone, aggressive driving was listed as the cause in 80 of the 185 total county-wide crashes, which includes 34 injuries and one fatality.
As part of an initiative, police are targeting motorists exhibiting aggressive driving behaviors such as running red lights and stop signs, speeding, tailgating, weaving in and out of traffic, and passing illegally on the right.
“Really watch those speed limit signs, be cognizant of what’s going on around you, and stay off of the cell phones. Don’t be texting and driving,” Nicklas said.

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