LEXINGTON, S.C. — The South Carolina Highway Patrol has added more troopers to Lexington County to help stop the growing number of fatalities.
Street Squad Lexington has been following the traffic issues within Lexington County. Many tell WLTX roads and safety are what causes them the most stress for themselves and their families.
Lance Cpl. David Jones with the South Carolina Highway Patrol knows the Lexington County roads better than anyone else.
“When I drive down the road, growing up in Lexington County and living here the majority of my life and now being a trooper working these roads, for me it’s different as a trooper driving,” said Jones. “When I drive with my family, I can go through an intersection and I’ll have a certain smell or I get chill bumps.”
Trooper Jones and many other troopers see the roads and know the number of accidents that occur and remember the situations where someone has lost their life.
So far this year, there have been seven fatalities in Lexington County alone out on the roadway. That’s the reason why more troopers are heading into the area.
“We look at numbers from 2018 and see where 68 people lost their life on the roadway and we look and see the year before, we only had 47,” explained Jones. “We see that increase and we often times say, ‘It’s just 21 people or 21 more lives lost on the roadway.’ Sometimes we fail to get that was 21 sons and daughters, 21 brothers and sisters, 21 loved ones people take care of.”
According to Trooper Jones, 1,060 speeding tickets, 455 seat belt tickets, and 45 impaired drivers have been arrested since the start of the new year.
The South Carolina Highway Patrol is adding more troopers in the area to crackdown on this problem.
“As troopers, we see it. We live it every day. I can promise you we’re going to do everything in our power to make sure we can reduce these fatalities,” said Jones.
Other troopers from around the state have been brought into Lexington County. This includes motorcycle troopers and other specialized units.
While the South Carolina Highway Patrol will be monitoring the roads, they say they need the help of the community to make the roads a safer place for everyone.
“Express to your friends and family and these groups of people you are a part of that traffic fatalities are up,” said Jones. “Everybody is subjected to some bad driving behavior so do the right thing. Make sure your loved ones are buckled up. Make sure they’re slowing down. Make sure they’re not driving distracted. Make sure that if they go and get a couple of drinks that they have a plan in place.”
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