Sheriff’s office, NPD conducting highway safety checks

Published 12:03 am Saturday, May 28, 2016

NATCHEZ — Local law enforcement agencies in the Miss-Lou are joining a national campaign to reduce traffic accidents.

Click it or Ticket, an annual campaign conducted by the National Highway Transportation and Safety Administration, has already begun in Adams County and will continue for several months.

Adams County Sheriff Travis Patten said he is the liaison for the 11-county district that includes Adams County.

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Patten said his office began conducting highway safety checks in earnest Monday and would continue until June 5.

Those checks include roadblocks throughout Adams County in order to enforce seat-belt laws and other traffic safety violations.

The Vidalia Police Department and Natchez Police Department are also participating in the national campaign.

Natchez Police Chief Danny White said NPD would begins its campain June 4.

White said his department would run overnight roadblocks throughout the city for a week at a time. The first week will begin June 4, but White said several others would occur before the end of September.

A total of 553 hours would be devoted to the campaign, White said, which would focus on enforcing laws concerning seat belts, driving under the influence and speeding.

“Basically, it’s to save lives,” White said. “(It’s about) trying to reduce fatalities.”

The campaign is paid for by grants from the Mississippi Department of Public Safety, which allow off-duty law enforcement officers to take extra shifts to run the roadblocks and safety checks.

The Mississippi Highway Patrol ranked Adams County 13 of 79 counties with a total of 11 fatalities in 2014.

In 2015, 313 Mississippi drivers who died in vehicle accidents were not wearing seat belts, the report said.