Morgantown Police Department aims to keep roads safe through a grant provided by the governor

Published: Sep. 8, 2021 at 6:14 PM EDT
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MORGANTOWN, W.Va (WDTV) - In a five-year period, West Virginia saw traffic fatalities averaged at 20 every 100,000 people. For Morgantown, in three years, they had 10 fatalities and over 2000 accidents.

This being one of the reasons Eric Powell, the chief of the Morgantown Police Department, has jumped on board with the governor’s highway safety program.

“If somebody is driving and they have the thought in their head that maybe we’re going to speed through this area or run this red light, they run the potential of harming themselves and other people and obviously that’s something we want to try to prevent from happening,” Powell said.

The governor’s program offers a grant to counties in the state that helps fund different educational programs and implement more enforcement strategies.

Programs like ‘click it or ticket’ is covered through this grant along with anything from checkpoints to preventing underaged drinking.

“It may cause someone a moment of second thought when they think about running that stop sign or speeding through an intersection or whatever the case may be,” Powell said.

Officers enforcing this safety program do so on a voluntary basis and the over $70,000 dollar grant helps pay officers for their overtime work, all to make sure roads are safe at all hours of the day.

“With these programs in place it sort of sends a message to the public that hey, we’re out here, we’re enforcing these laws,” Powell said.

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