Crackdown needed on reckless drivers
The police department has announced a plan aimed at speeders and other irresponsible drivers to reduce road deaths.
A CRACKDOWN on speeding and other reckless drivers is exactly what's needed to check an increase in traffic fatalities on Oahu. Responsible drivers, pedestrians, bicyclists and others who share the roads should welcome Honolulu Police Chief's Boisse Correa's initiative to boost enforcement. (Star-Bulletin, Nov. 10
Traffic-related deaths on Oahu now total 82 so far this year. That's 16 more lives lost than at the same time last year, 26 more than in the same period in 2004. Of the 75 accidents this year, 37 involved speeding, nine involved alcohol and five occurred from a combination of both.
Not included in the numbers are the scores of people injured in crashes and collisions. And no figure can tally the suffering that results.
HPD's new effort responds to a rising public call in recent months for escalated enforcement as people see more and more foolhardy drivers far exceeding speed limits, thoughtlessly ignoring red lights and endangering pedestrians -- even with new laws designed to curb menacing motorists.
In another indication of public sentiment, the last election saw an overwhelming number of voters approve a City Charter amendment requiring that officials make pedestrian and bicycle safety a priority.
Correa won't say how many officers have been assigned to the enforcement task force, nor when and where they will be deployed. That should keep bad drivers guessing, but an obvious police presence also would deter recklessness.
How Correa wants to carry out what he describes as a "major, major push" against lawlessness on the roads is his choice, as long as police meet the need for heightened enforcement. As the police chief said in announcing his plan, "enough is enough."
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