Troopers begin weeklong crackdown on speeders

MONTGOMERY, Ala. - Law enforcement officers in Florida, Georgia and three other southern states are planning a crackdown on speeding motorists next week.

State troopers and local officers in Alabama, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina and Tennessee are participating in a speed enforcement campaign called Operation Southern Shield 2019, according to news releases from the state agencies.

The enforcement push begins Monday and continues through July 21.

In Florida, troopers will be targeting speeders on I-10, I-75 and I-95.

The Florida Highway Patrol said it will be citing drivers going over the posted speed limit to keep the roads safe and make sure drivers aren’t practicing dangerous driving behaviors that may lead to an accident. 

According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, there were more than 10,500 crashes in Florida last year involving drivers speeding or going too fast for the conditions. Speed was a factor in more than 270 fatalities statewide. 

As part of the crackdown, troopers will be pulling over speeders, even if they're only slightly over the limit.

Law enforcement officials plan several news conferences about the operation next week.

"It's very simple: slow down, stop being distracted and wear your seat belt," Lt. Maurice Raines of the Georgia State Patrol told WALB. "One-third of fatal crashes is a result of speed and so we partnered together throughout the region to send a message not only in our state but across the region in all the other states that it's not going to be tolerated.

The operation was developed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's Region 4 and focuses on the heavy summer travel period when the rate of fatal and injury crashes in the southeast is higher than any other time of the year.

Operation Southern Shield started in 2017.

Copyright 2019 by WJXT News4Jax. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.