Garner Cleveland Record

Police cracking down on speeding on 70

The police department is stepping up its traffic enforcement on U.S. Highway 70.

More than 1,200 car wrecks occurred in Garner in 2014, according to statistics released by the Garner Police Department.

And more than 200 of them listed speeding as a contributing factor. At an earlier town council meeting, police Chief Brandon Zuidema presented a traffic safety report the the town council and asked that drivers slow down.

With White Oak continuing to grow and the I-440 project underway, traffic will continue to see an increase in the coming years.

He said the police department will continue to focus its attention on speeding along Highway 70.

“We are committed to traffic safety through education and enforcement,” Zuidema said. “Our ultimate goal would be to have no traffic violations or crashes ever occur, but obviously that is not realistic. We are focused on working to reduce crashes and injuries resulting from crashes in the town of Garner.”

According to, there were more deaths by vehicle wrecks than deaths by firearms in the U.S. in 2013.

DWI arrests also saw an increase last year. There were 157 DWI arrests in 2014, an increase of 21 percent from the previous year according to the department’s statistics.

Zuidema said the department does not receive any funds as a result of issuing citations, that all fines and fees go to the state court system.

“We also do not have any quotas for officers requiring them to issue a certain number of citations in a given period of time,” he said. “Thus, our traffic safety program is truly focused on enhancing safety and educating the public.”

By the numbers

2014 traffic statistics

Crashes: 1,201

Speed as the primary factor: 217

Injuries from crash: 189

Traffic stops: 9,593

Speeding citations: 2,923

DWI arrests: 157

Four-year averages

Crashes: 1,144

Speed as the primary factor: 208

Injuries from crash: 198

Traffic stops: 8,888

Speeding citations: 2,496

DWI arrests: 122

Source: Garner Police Department