No Need to speed logo SMALLIn a continual effort to increase safety, the Benton Police Department will be conducting the “NØ Need To Speed” traffic enforcement and education initiative. Throughout March officers will place extra emphasis on stopping motorists driving faster than the posted speed limit, particularly within school zones.

The added enforcement action is being taken with the goal of raising awareness about the dangers of breaking traffic laws and ultimately saving lives. That includes reminding drivers that not only is it illegal to speed in a school zone, it is also illegal use a cell phone state law (House Bill 1049) which prohibits the use of a handheld wireless telephone by any driver of a motor vehicle while passing a school building or school zone during school hours when children are present.

Speeding has been demonstrated to be a contributing factor in almost 1/3 of all fatal car crashes in the US. This includes not just excessive speeding, but also driving too fast for road conditions. One common misconception is that if the speed limit is 45 MPH that you can still do that in a torrential downpour of rain and still be within the law. Actually, if the conditions are that unsafe then you should decrease your speed accordingly and also leave additional travel distance between vehicles.

Another of the top leading causes of accident involving injury or fatality occurs when drivers disregard a traffic signal (running a red light). One study showed drivers who ran red lights due to speeding tended to be younger inexperienced drivers.

The ultimate goal of this initiative is not to write more citations. Instead, we want to encourage people to slow down and arrive safely at their destinations. We hope that by taking an enforcement and education approach we’ll be able to reduce traffic accidents and increase safety.

To report suspicious driving and/or accidents, call the Benton Police Department at 501-778-1171 or 501-315-TIPS. Individuals also may send us anonymous information to CRIMES (274637) with the keyword BNPD in the body of the text or go to www.crimereports.com to leave a tip. A crime tip can also be submitted via the official Benton Police Department app found on ITunes and Google Play.

Follow BNPD on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Benton-Police-Department/221829174560849