By Marissa Mitchell
Corona, CA – Corona Police Department recently received $75,000 in grant money for traffic enforcement and crash prevention, resulting in some crackdown on impaired drivers.
The Corona Department has been given the money from the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) for a year-long programs. This program will consist of special enforcements, particularly in the case of impaired drivers, and public awareness efforts to prevent traffic-related deaths and injuries.
The $75,000 will be used to keep roadways safe. OTS Director Rhonda Craft states, “Unsafe behaviors account for 94 percent of traffic crashes. This grant emphasizes the two most effective ways to change behaviors – education and enforcement. The Corona Police Department, with assistance from the Office of Traffic Safety, will use these tools to help keep the City of Corona streets safe.”
The number of persons killed on roadways fell a record decade low in 2010, but since then it has risen almost 17 percent across the state, with 3,429 fatalities in the year 2015. Most notable is the climb of pedestrian and bicycle fatalities, now comprising nearly 25 percent of all traffic deaths. This has raised concerns of distracted driving and drug-impaired driving.
The grant funding will provide an avenue to combat distracted and impaired driving, as well as the problem of speeding and crashes at intersections.
“The rise in impaired drivers is very concerning,” declared Chief of Police Michael Abel. “The Corona Police Department is dedicated to reducing the amount of impaired drivers by education through our Drive 4 Life program, proactive enforcement operations, and our community outreach,” he continued.
The grant money presented will fund educational programs, DUI/DWI checkpoints, DUI saturation patrols, bicycle/pedestrian safety enforcement, motorcycle safety enforcement, distracted driving enforcement, Seat belt and child safety seat enforcement, and speeding/red light/stop sign enforcement.
Although alcohol remains the worst offender of DUI cases and crashes, the Corona PD will be supporting the effort of the OTS to increase awareness that “DUI Doesn’t Just Mean Booze.”
Prescription medications and marijuana can impair the driver alone as a substance, or in combination with alcohol, resulting in a DUI or DWI arrest.