By: Lanetra Bennett | WCTV Eyewitness News
June 10, 2019
GADSDEN COUNTY, Fla. (WCTV) -- In Gadsden County, a major push to crackdown on driving violations is underway.
Operation Summer Blues consists of the Florida Highway Patrol, Gadsden County Sheriff's Office and the city police departments in the county.
FHP says over the past several years, the county has averaged 650 crashes a year, resulting in the deaths of 16 people and has injured 400 more.
Law enforcement is fighting to improve those statistics.
"See, that car is doing 56 mph and speeding up," said Trooper Brian Speigner, who proceeded to make a swift u-turn on Joe Adams Road in Quincy to catch up with the speeding driver.
"Where are you going in such a hurry?" He asked.
Authorities throughout the county will be strongly enforcing speeding, distracted driving and seat belt violations during Operation Summer Blues.
Speigner says law enforcement officers also look at cracked windshields, windows with tint that's too dark and even worn tires.
"There's more violations out there that cause crashes," he explained. "Faulty equipment doesn't help, especially when we're getting now into hurricane season and our summer showers. People driving on wet roads and slick tires."
If drivers don't see blue lights behind the, they should look out for them on the side of the road: Troopers are really cracking down on the Move Over Law.
Jeff Solin got stopped for not getting over. The law requries drivers to move over to the next lane, or slow down by 20 mph under the posted speed limit.
Solin was clocked passing a trooper on the side of I-10 while going 67 mph.
"Oh yeah, I knew immediately," Solin said. "I just wasn't even thinking at the time and I didn't even think to signal over. As soon as I saw the blue lights, I was pretty much ditched."
Gretna Police Chief Brian Alexander expects the operation to reduce the county's traffic fatalities.
"It's definitely disheartening to lose a loved one based off of speeding, acting erratically, aggressive driving," he said. "This is definitely touching."
The operation will run throughout the summer, ending on the day after Labor Day.