Costume Party: Troopers Dress as DOT, Bust More than 50 in 1 Day in Utica
Most drivers will yield and show caution when they see a law enforcement vehicle parked along the road looking for traffic violations. But, far fewer show that caution when traveling through a construction work zone.
In an effort to get motorists to slowdown and drive safely in those construction areas, members of the New York State Police had a bit of a costume party on Wednesday, dressing up to look like New York State Department of Transportation workers, specifically looking for dangerous, reckless and distracted driving. It's called 'Operation Hardhat.'
The operation targeted what is called 'an active work zone' on State Route 12 in the City of Utica and issued 56 tickets in just one day.
Of those, 24 were for speeding, 14 were seat belt violations, three for cell phone distracted driving and there were 15 more tickets handed out for other infractions, state police officials said.
In New York, fines for speeding in work zones are doubled.
Additionally, NYSP and DOT officials remind drivers about the state's Move Over law, in which drivers are required to move over a lane when it’s safe and/or slow down when encountering vehicles displaying red, white, blue, amber, or green lights.
"Every single person working on the side of the road deserves to get back home to their loved ones!," a release from NYSP said.
Last year, the targeted 'Operation Hardhat' campaign resulted in the issuance of more than 2,300 traffic tickets statewide. State Police officials again remind drivers to read road signs and use caution in work zones.
While the driving and construction seasons are just getting underway, the “Operation Hardhat” initiative continues through the fall.