KING COUNTY, WASHINGTON - This summer, law enforcement in King County will join colleagues in Snohomish, Skagit, and Whatcom Counties to conduct X-52 patrols, targeting motorists who speed or drive while intoxicated. The first of these patrols is Saturday June 14, 2008. Other patrols follow on July 19, August 1, and September 28.
"Traffic crashes kill or seriously injure hundreds of people in King County each year," said Dr. David Fleming, Director and Health Officer for Public Health Seattle & King County. "Our coordinated education and enforcement efforts will help prevent crashes, reduce injuries and save lives."
Impaired driving and speed are the two factors most often cited in death and disabling injuries on Washington's roadways. The X-52 patrols, or "Extra Patrols Every Week," are a statewide strategy to prevent drivers from speeding and operating vehicles after drinking or using other drugs.
Local participating police departments include Bellevue, Burien, Clyde Hill, Des Moines, Issaquah, Kent, Kirkland, Mercer Island, Newcastle, Port of Seattle, Redmond, SeaTac, Seattle, Snoqualmie, Tukwila, and the Washington State Patrol.
So far in 2008, King County X-52 patrols have reported:
- 1,604 contacts with dangerous drivers
- 28 arrests for driving while intoxicated
- 744 speeding tickets issued
- 1,094 total traffic tickets issued
In 2006, the latest year with statistics, 147 King County residents died in traffic crashes, and 1,226 King County residents were hospitalized for injuries incurred in traffic crashes.
As part of this summer's X-52 mobilization in King County, police departments throughout the region will match every hour of X-52 overtime patrols with additional patrols throughout the summer.
Public Health Seattle & King County and the King County Traffic Safety Coalition organize X-52 patrols in King County. Funding for X-52 comes from the Washington Traffic Safety Commission and is a strategy aligned with "Target Zero," Washington's Strategic Highway Safety Plan. The goal of "Target Zero" is zero traffic deaths and serious injuries by 2030.
King County Traffic Safety Coalition
Public Health- Seattle & King County chairs and staffs the King County Traffic Safety Coalition. Members include representatives from a variety of King County law enforcement agencies, the Washington State Liquor Control Board, alcohol and drug prevention organizations, DUI victims' groups, traffic engineers, non-profit organizations, and others. The Washington State Traffic Safety Commission provides funding for the Coalition and other King County traffic safety activities.
Providing effective and innovative health and disease prevention services for over 1.8 million residents and visitors of King County, Public Health Seattle & King County works for safer and healthier communities for everyone, every day.