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TxDOT launches ‘Operation Slowdown’ campaign to save lives

In 2021, there were more than 1,500 traffic-related fatalities in Texas, officials with TxDOT...
In 2021, there were more than 1,500 traffic-related fatalities in Texas, officials with TxDOT say.(Courtesy TxDOT)
Published: Jun. 7, 2022 at 12:47 PM CDT
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TEXARKANA, Texas (KSLA) - Don’t be surprised if while driving the roads of Texas these next few weeks, you notice an increased police presence. It’s all part of an effort to slow down traffic and save lives.

“Speed is the number one contributing factor in traffic accidents in Texas,” said Kristy Whisenhunt, a traffic specialist with the Texas Department of Transportation Atlanta District.

Whisenhunt says to combat speed related accidents, TxDOT has teamed up with law enforcement agencies across the state to slow down speeding drivers. On Tuesday, June 7, the agencies kicked off “Operation Slowdown.”

“We want motorists to drive at a safe speed, so if there is bad weather, slow down, if traffic is heavy and you are coming up on a construction zone or something like that, slow down,” she said.

Traffic leaders say in 2021, the number of people killed on Texas roads in vehicle crashes reached a level not seen since 1981, with 34% of those deaths involving speed. Statewide, there were more than 1,500 traffic-related fatalities.

“Now here in our Atlanta District, we lost 51 people due to crashes involving speed,” Whisenhunt said.

The Atlanta District covers 10 northeast Texas counties, including Bowie, Cass, Harrison, and Marion. “Operation Slowdown” will continue through June 21.

“Basically everybody slow down and drive as safe as they can drive,” Whisenhunt said.

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