Area police announce crackdown on aggressive drivers
Speeders, tailgaters, redlight runners and others who fall under the rubric of “aggressive drivers” will be the subject of some extra-aggressive enforcement by area police throughout the next several weeks.
The Montgomery Township Police Department has announced that it’s one of a number of police departments across the state participating in a program — funded by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation — that between now and Aug. 15 emphasizes stopping and ticketing drivers who exceed posted speed limits, tailgate, pass improp- erly, fail to obey traffic control signals and signs, fail to use turn signals, change lanes unsafely or obstruct intersection, causing traffic congestion.
The point, according to Montgomery Township behaviors and reduce that have to do with aggressive driving, which the that’s “likely to increase the risk of a collision and is motivated by impatience, annoyance, hostility or an attempt to save time.”
Aggressive driving is linked to 50 percent to 70 percent of car crashes, police said, while 56 percent of deadly crashes are related to aggressive driving.
“Every second out on the road you see people flying by or tailgating — it’s everywhere, it’s out of control, it’s too much,” said Brad Rudolph, safety press department is funding the current enforcement efforts with part of $2.5 million it administration.
Rudolph said that PennDOT funds such programs several times a year “when we see more aggressive driving taking place in certain corridors or areas; we address it when it seems necessary.”
Aggressive driving is on the uptick in many areas of Montgomery County, said Rudolph. He noted that aggressive drivers run the gamut from young to old, although PennDOT places special emphasis on aggressive driving in the high school driver’s education programs it funds “to curb this trend and teach kids before it starts.”
We try to get out to the schools and give kids and parents a first-person account and try to shake them up a bit — talk about the bodies we deal with and show them the realities of speeding and road rage and all of those things,” Rudolph said.
“People know not to speed but they do it anyway, so we have to try to raise awareness as best we can,” he said.
And sometimes, when awareness isn’t enough, the threat of a ticket might have an impact, Rudolph noted.
“Sometimes that’s more compelling than telling a story about someone who was killed, because people say, ‘Oh, it’s not gonna happen to me,’” he said. “But if it affects their wallet, they might be more prone to listen and change their behavior.”