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Speeding Tickets On The Rise Due To Empty Highways

While most of the country was sheltering in place to avoid spreading the COVID-19  virus, some motorists took advantage of highways and roads that were virtually empty by speeding.

According to NBCDFW reporter Andrew Welsh-Huggins, across the country, many states are still seeing motorists engage in the same type of behavior even as people are trying to regain a sense of normalcy.

  • From January–August 2020, the Iowa Highway Patrol has noted a 101% increase in the number of tickets of motorists going over 100 miles per hour.  The state also reported a 75% increase in tickets issued to drivers for going 25 miles per hour or more over the posted speed limit.
  • The California Highway Patrol (CHP) said it had issued more than 15,000 from mid-March to August 19th for motorists going over 100 miles per hour. The law enforcement agency that this is more than a 100% increase from the same period in 2019.
  • Ohio State Patrol troopers have issued 2,200 tickets from April to motorists who have been clocked at more than 100 miles per hour. The record during that period is a driver going at approximately 147 miles per hour in the greater Cincinnati area.  Ohio officials say that this increase is over 61% higher than at the same time in 2019. July 2020 saw Ohio’s deadliest month with more than 154 fatalities.

Officials say that while the number of vehicles on the road has decreased, the more open roads have encouraged some motorists to push their limits because there was less of a presence of law enforcement during that time.

Over holiday weekends, such as the most recent Labor Day holiday, typically, law enforcement agencies will ramp up their presence and the level of enforcement.  CHP spokesperson Ian Hoey said that the California Highway Patrol was planning to increase its presence this past weekend.

“Let’s just slow down a bit and enjoy the day,” the CHP’s Santa Rosa Division tweeted.

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