ALEA Part of Five-State Operation Southern Shield to Combat Speed

The Alabama Law Enforcement Agency’s (ALEA) Highway Patrol and local law enforcement agencies are set to put the brakes on speeding Monday, July 15, to Sunday, July 21, during Operation Southern Shield 2019, a speed enforcement campaign covering five Southeastern states.

Troopers are joining forces with other law enforcement officers in Alabama, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina and Tennessee on interstates and other major highways to target drivers who endanger the safety of others on the road by driving at speeds well above the legally posted limit.

“Speed kills,” Alabama’s Secretary of Law Enforcement Hal Taylor said. “We are pleased to partner with our neighboring states and local law enforcement agencies in an effort to save lives.” 

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), speeding has been a factor in nearly one-third of all traffic deaths in the United States during the past two decades. In 2017, speeding killed 9,717 people – approximately 26 percent of that year’s nationwide traffic fatalities. In 2018, approximately 346 individuals were killed in speed-related traffic crashes across Alabama.

State and local officers with 295 law enforcement agencies in Alabama issued more than 14,000 citations during this past year’s Southern Shield and 36 percent of the citations were issued for speeding.  Citations for the 2018 traffic safety campaign included: 5,278 for speeding, 1,009 for no seat belts, 1,150 for driving while revoked/suspended and 1,056 for no insurance. In addition, Alabama law enforcement officers took 339 suspected DUI drivers off the road during that period. 

Not only does speeding increase one’s risk of being killed or seriously injured in a crash, but it reduces the effectiveness of seat belts and other safety equipment in vehicles, Secretary Taylor said, and it may lead to more severe injuries and an increased stopping distance after the driver perceives danger.

Other joint Operation Southern Shield enforcement activities are planned through the week.