New ad­di­tions made to traf­fic unit

Mo­tor­cy­cle, deputy added to NCSO unit

The Covington News - - LOCAL NEWS - By Tyler Smith

The New­ton County Sher­iff’s Of­fice traf­fic unit will soon wel­come their new­est ad­di­tions when Deputy Jack Redlinger and his part­ner, a 2008 Har­ley David­son Elec­tra-Glide, join the team.

The unit has been ac­tive since Au­gust 2007 and is headed by NCSO Sgt. Randy Downs.

“Our job is to pre­vent ac­ci­dents,” Downs said. “We don’t have quo­tas, we don’t write tick­ets for the money. We are here to ad­dress cit­i­zens’ con­cerns.”

Redlinger will soon be on the road pa­trolling on the new mo­tor­cy­cle in pri­or­ity ar­eas around the county in­clud­ing school speed zones.

“We have been able to re­duce ma­jor ac­ci­dents in the county,” Downs said. “There have been nine traf­fic fa­tal­i­ties so far this year, only one of which could have been pre­vented through our unit.”

Most of the deaths were caused by driver er­ror or fail­ure to wear a seat­belt, Downs said.

To be­come a mem­ber of the traf­fic unit, deputies must first com­plete a bat­tery of cour­ses in­clud­ing crime scene in­ves­ti­ga­tions and DUIs. Redlinger is pre­vi­ously re­tired from a sim­i­lar traf­fic unit in At­lanta where he also pa­trolled on a mo­tor­cy­cle.

Redlinger and the Har­ley will pa­trol dur­ing all times of the day and night, Downs said, and will be able to go places of­fi­cers in a cruiser could not. The mo­tor­cy­cle is a first for the NCSO but might not be the last. Downs called the new ad­di­tion a test run which could lead to more ad­di­tions to the mo­tor pool.

Buy­ing more mo­tor­cy­cles in­stead of pa­trol cars has sev­eral fi­nan­cial ben­e­fits in­clud­ing bet­ter gas mileage, cheaper main­te­nance and an ini­tial cost which is less than half of a cruiser, said Downs.

Mandi Singer/The Cov­ing­ton News

New wheels: New­ton County Sher­iff’s Of­fice Deputy Jack Redlinger sits on the new­est ad­di­tion to the traf­fic unit, a 2008 Har­ley David­son Po­lice Elec­tra-GSlide in front of the Sher­iff’s of­fice Thurs­day af­ter­noon.

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