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MHP launching ‘pay attention’ campaign

During the month of October, the Mississippi Highway Patrol will conduct the “Pay Attention Or Pay A Fine” traffic safety campaign statewide.

Recent studies concerning traffic crashes in Mississippi over the last 3 years show the month of October to have a high number of traffic fatalities. The studies also show a large number of Mississippi teenagers were involved in these traffic deaths. During the month of October the Mississippi Highway Patrol in conjunction with the Mississippi Office of Highway Safety , will take a three-step approach in implementing this much-needed traffic safety campaign.

MHP’s first step is to educate our teen drivers around the state by giving traffic safety presentations while also explaining the huge responsibilities that come with operating a motor vehicle. MHP’s second step is to have Troopers from the public affairs division meet with driver education instructors around the state during the month of October. Resources will be provided to them concerning traffic crash data that can be used in a classroom setting, while also providing support and information pertaining to the issuance of student driver’s licenses.

MHP’s third step is to provide traffic enforcement. Troopers will be on the lookout for careless, reckless, and distracted drivers that are not paying attention. Speed limits will be strictly enforced along with seatbelt laws for drivers not paying attention.

“We are placing emphasis on teen driving, but this campaign pertains to all of the motoring public,” said MHP’s Capt. Johnny Poulos. “Our goal is not to raise the number of traffic citations issued, but to lower the number of knocks made on the doors of families to notify them of a loved one not returning home. Communication, education, and cooperation will help ensure the success of the campaign, but it will also take good decisions made by drivers who get behind the wheel every day. We’re hoping people realize that sometimes the price can be a lot higher than just a fine.”