69 / 51
      70 / 48
      59 / 50

      Traffic blitz in Kershaw County aims to reduce roadway deaths

      KERSHAW COUNTY, SC (WACH) -- Law enforcement agencies are teaming up to reduce extra high roadway deaths in Kershaw County.

      Officials say almost as many people have died on roads in the county so far this year, compared to all of last year. Now law enforcement is working to put the breaks on anymore potential deadly accidents.

      Kershaw County Sheriff's Dept. is joining forces with Highway Patrol for a traffic blitz starting Wednesday.

      "What we're trying to do is stop this trend of fatalities we're having in Kershaw County right now," said Lance Cpl. Brent Kelly with SC Highway Patrol. "We've had eleven so far this year compared to twelve for the whole year of 2012."

      Eight of the lives lost on Kershaw County highways this year were taken by drunk drivers.

      "I went over to the movies Sunday, and while I was riding, I kept sitting up, 'cause I get nervous," said Brian Williams who works in Kershaw County. "I just don't like when people just be flying by and flying by."

      Now Sheriff Jim Matthews is teaming up with Highway Patrol to make sure that changes.

      "I felt like it was my responsibility, whether it was politically expedient or not, to do something about the drunk drivers," said Matthews. "Drunk drivers kill far more people than armed robbers, gang bangers, everybody else."

      Wednesday through Saturday, Kershaw County will see extra officers patrolling the highways and doing check points at night.

      "We've got extra people that have come over," said Kelly. "A lot of the motorcycle units are coming to town this week."

      "This blitz that's going on this week is probably the strongest show of law enforcement force to deal with this problem," said Matthews.

      Officers this week are targeting drivers for seatbelt use, drunk driving and excessive speeding.

      "I challenge anybody, actually, to show us a ticket they got for going five or 10 miles an hour over the speed limit," said Matthews. "We're not turning the county into a speed trap, but we go after people who are really excessively speeding."

      Officials say traffic units won't be staked out in any particular location this week. Their goal is to keep changing locations, sending warnings to drivers throughout the county to drive safe.