Perfect Weather, Perfect Conditions to Catch Speeders

Have the sunny skies lured police officers out onto the busy roads?


North Texas police departments are bringing the heat -- but it's not because of the warmer weather.

Seeing a police car waiting for speeders along a busy highway is hardly an unusual sight, but seeing four Arlington squad cars spaced within a two- or three-mile stretch of road is.

But Arlington police said the sight Tuesday morning was just part of their regular patrols.

Dallas and DART police were also out in force Tuesday.

DART police patrolled HOV lanes to look for violators during the morning rush hour. Officers issued 51 citations, a significantly higher number than on a typical day, DART spokesman Mark Ball said.

Did the perfect weather and sunny skies lure officers out onto the busy roads?

Technically no, because police officers are on duty 24/7, but the weather can have an effect.

"There would probably be more arrests on sunny (days), probably more calls on sunny days, because more people are out, " Dallas police Lt. Scott Bratcher said. "There' more opportunity. That's my opinion. And, when it's 15 degrees, the ink in your pen won't run, won't work, on a ticket."

When inclement weather hits, it can be too dangerous to issue citations, or officers may be too busy responding to cars wrecks.

But Bratcher questioned those assumptions.

"I don't know if there's any truth to that," he said. "We had a real high ticket month in January, and that's one of the colder months. It's hard to tell what causes the majority of tickets to be written."

On Tuesday extra Dallas officers manned some of the city's most dangerous intersections and roads known for speeders thanks for the Strategic Traffic Enforcement Program, or STEP, a federal grant program.

"The violations we are looking for are DWI, speeding, occupant restraint -- like seatbelt violations and child safety seats -- because those are the big contributors to injuries and fatalities," Bratcher said.

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