Nearly 160 crashes on Interstate 70 through Mid-Missouri, part of Troop F, over the past year are blamed on drivers following too closely, according to the Missouri State Highway Patrol.
Over the last five years, there have been 840 crashes with seven fatalities, 193 injuries and 640 incidents of property damage handled by Troop F troopers which were all attributed to tailgating drivers.
MSHP Sgt. Scott White said, “Following people too close is killing people here in Mid-Missouri and we want to put a stop to it. And we need the public on board with us.”
After a series of deadly November crashes on I-70, the highway patrol took to the skies on Tuesday to remind drivers of the dangers of following too closely, speeding and other traffic safety violations.
During the early afternoon flight with the highway patrol, ABC 17 News witnessed more than a dozen traffic stops on I-70 just west of Kingdom City.
With the help of the helicopter, troopers on the ground issued 29 tickets and warnings in just over an hour.
Sgt. White said Tuesday’s operation was not about punishment. “It’s also education. We know that we can go out there and we can write tickets, we can write warnings, but if we don’t have the public on board that agree, ‘Do you know what? This is a problem,’ we’re going to keep working these crashes,” says White.
The highway patrol says of the operation’s 29 citations, only 11 were actually tickets. The remaining 18 were warnings to drivers to follow the law.