Ohio Turnpike, highway patrol focus on aerial enforcement of extreme speeders

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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WJW) — As construction season begins, the Ohio Turnpike and Infrastructure Commission is already sending a message about safety, eyes in the sky will be working to catch extreme speeders.

Orange barrel season is underway with a renewed focus on work zone safety. A partnership to keep the turnpike roadways safer continues with Ohio State Highway Patrol aerial enforcement.

“We will have literally hundreds of people working on construction sites about 15 different projects either started or about to start across the 241-mile turnpike,” said Brian Newbacher, Public Information Officer for the Ohio Turnpike and Infrastructure Commission.

The commission launched construction season with a $205 million capital improvement program to modernize toll collection on the turnpike from the Indiana to Pennsylvania border for E-ZPass users with the goal of Open Road Tolling in the spring of 2023. In addition to major construction projects beginning in Lorain, Erie and Sandusky counties this year.

“What we found over the course of the pandemic is even though there’s less traffic there’s more speeding violations as a percentage of the overall violations,” said Newbacher.

Tuesday, the Ohio Turnpike, and Infrastructure Commission announced enforcement data from last month showed 38 enforcements were conducted, and speeding citations issued; 22 drivers were clocked at speeds of more than 90 miles per hour, and 13 drivers were caught at speeds over 100 miles per hour.

“Keeping those construction sites and those road workers safe has always been important to us,” said Sgt. Ray Santiago of Ohio State Highway Patrol. “Some of those zones are a little hard to work, so having the ability to have someone in the air that can see such a broad area and see these violations as they’re occurring calling down to a unit that’s working the road has made life so much easier and this made things a lot safer.”

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