COLUMBUS COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — The Columbus County Sheriff’s Office has developed a new traffic unit.
Sheriff Jody Greene says this unit will focus on all traffic violations in the county, “in hopes that we can make our rural roadways safer, decreasing fatality rates and vehicle crash injuries.”
CCSO patrol deputies are responsible for answering all calls for service, including traffic complaints, even though the North Carolina Highway Patrol handles all vehicle crashes and enforce all traffic violations. This unit will relieve patrol deputies from having to respond to traffic calls when they are needed for other calls.
This is a two-deputy team that will work along with our Heavy Enforcement Action Team (H.E.A.T.). They will drive Ford Mustangs with all the equipment funded by grant money from the Governor’s Highway Safety Program.
“We were awarded this program because the numbers of crashes due to violations involving DWI, texting, and driving, failure to wear seatbelts, and vehicle safety equipment violations were very high in our county,” the sheriff’s office wrote in a release. “Columbus County was ranked the lowest for seatbelt use compared to the surrounding 15 counties of the state, at only 82.1% of use. Many of these crash investigations have shown speed to be a contributing factor. This unit will not investigate vehicle crashes as the Highway Patrol will still handle those calls.”