WSP catching more speeders

WSP catching more speeders
TRI-CITIES, Wash. - Deadly accidents like this one near Highway 397 tend to make everyone drive a little safer. For a little while at least. Then people quickly fall back into bad habits. Jerry Lindenburger sees it all the time on 395 near Oregon.

He said, "The speed limit in one part of the highway out there, I think is 40 and I don't think hardly anybody does 40."

Washington State Troopers are well aware. They're combing Highway 395, Highway 397 and Interstate 82 in force. Issuing more speeding tickets than ever before trying to cut down the number of accidents.

Last year state officers issued more than 10,000 speeding tickets in the Tri-Cities. This year, those numbers are up by more than 2000 and the year isn't over yet. More people have also gotten tickets for accidents.

Those accidents are less severe. Fewer people are getting hurt compared to last year. The number of people killed on state roads in the Tri-Cities is also down. The work isn't done yet.

It's intersections like this along the highway that are the biggest cause for concern, going from 50 miles per hour to a dead stop has many driving on the offensive.

Jerry said, "I looked and here was a truck that was not going to stop and I stopped and he went by. I generally look both ways before I cross the freeway, even though I have the light."

Troopers keep a close watch on the places that are hotspots for accidents until those collision rates trail off again.

Lt. Mike Saunders, WSP Officer said, "That doesn't mean that violations aren't occuring in other areas but it doesn't seem to be as big an accident or collision-causing problem.

It's all about sending a message to dangerous drivers hoping to improve everyone's safety.

WSP tells KEPR even more patrols will be out looking for speeders in the coming months.

The bad weather and holiday parties can make for one of the most dangerous times on the roads.