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September 19, 2006
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Police crackdown on Va. interstates yields about 5,300 citations

The Associated Press
RICHMOND, Va.- Virginia State Police have wrapped up their special patrols of Interstates 95 and 81.

State police say that in two days of beefed-up patrols on I-95 and I-81 last week, troopers stopped just over 2,800 speeders, and 608 reckless drivers. They also made 40 DUI arrests. Police say troopers cited a total of over 5,200 traffic violations.

The third phase of Operation Air, Land and Speed was held on Thursday and Friday. The other two were in July and August and included weekend days.

State police kicked off the special patrol because of traffic fatality rates in the early months of the year. Colonel Steven Flaherty, police superintendent, said he ordered the patrols to get motorists to change their behavior on the roads. He says the initiative was to save lives, not to write tickets.

Flaherty notes in a statement that there were no traffic deaths in Virginia last week during the special patrols.

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