By Jennifer Lenain, Item Staff Writer
The Picayune Item
The Picayune Police Department recently received two grants from the state totaling $31,386.83 for traffic enforcement.
Both, the Occupant Protection Grant and the Impaired Driving Countermeasures Grant were awarded to the department on Tuesday, said Deputy Chief Chad Dorn.
“The Occupant Protection Grant will fund officers to work overtime during peak traffic hours,” Dorn said. Officers’ work funded through this grant will be strictly enforcing traffic laws and Dorn said they will specifically look for seat belt violations and child-restraint violations.
The Occupant Protection Grant is for $5,000 and it allows the department to participate in the national “Click It or Ticket” campaign.
“Ultimately, by doing this, the Picayune Police Department’s goal is to reduce the amount of injuries from occurring where drivers and passengers involved in motor vehicle crashes are not seat belted,” Dorn said.
The department also received the Impaired Driving Countermeasures Grant of $26,386.83.
Dorn said this grant funds officers to work overtime during peak traffic hours as well, but “officers who work under this grant will be strictly enforcing all traffic laws and will be primarily looking for impaired drivers.
“The Impaired Driving Countermeasures Grant allows us to participate in the national “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaigns,” Dorn said.
Chief Bryan Dawsey said the grant will put extra officers on patrol during major traffic times and on holidays. “It will also allow us to educate residents and conduct presentations for students about impaired driving awareness,” Dawsey said.
“Having the extra officers out on the streets looking for impaired drivers will help us reduce the amount of automobile crashes we have in our city,” Dawsey said.
“Receiving these two grants will help us in maintaining our zero tolerance with impaired driving and increase the seat belt usage within our city,” Dawsey said.