YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Although the sign indicates just four days since the last crash, authorities say they’re encouraged with statistics from the two month old “no tolerance” zone along I-680 in the area.
“The area is definitely being worked and we’re being heavily visible on there,” said Sargent Ray Santiago.
On April 23, State Troopers and Youngstown Police announced they would be focusing on traffic violators on an eleven-mile stretch of the freeway – from 224 in Boardman to near the junction with I-80 in Austintown.
Figures released by the Highway Patrol show there have been no fatal crashes and only a handful of injury-accidents. None involved distracted driving.
“When during the same time frame last year, we had a handful of crashes that were scattered throughout that zone that were distracted-related,” Santiago said.
In Youngstown, although the numbers are not complete, for the six weeks between May 1 and June 23, 2014 – which was the year before police started using radar speed cameras – officers made 48 traffic stops along I-680.
For the same period this year, the number fell to 37.
“That means, you know, our efforts are making a difference and paying dividends and you know, folks are paying attention,” Santiago said.
For now, Troopers won’t say how much longer they will continue with the “zero tolerance” enforcement, but will keep an eye on their data to make sure problems – especially with distracted driving – don’t resume.