The Dallas County Sheriff’s Department has agreed to move 20 of its 100 deputies to north Interstate 35 starting in January.
It’s about time. That section of highway sees a high level of speeding, reckless driving and crashes. In 2007 the section between Northwest Highway and LBJ Freeway had the city’s second-highest number of alcohol-related crashes for years. Think that’s because it’s next to all of those strip clubs, liquor stores and nightclubs?
Sheriff’s deputies, not Dallas police, will now patrol I-35 from Interstate 30 to LBJ Freeway, pull over drunk drivers (we hope), and clear accidents.
In one recent 12-month stretch, the Dallas Sheriff’s Department investigated 5,024 crashes and averaged 25 minutes to clear freeway accidents, compared with the city of Dallas’ average of 2.5 hours.
Even so, its funding was slashed due to budgetary constraints.
The unit has cost the county $12 million a year, but traffic ticket revenue offset only about half that amount.
I guess the city of Dallas doesn’t care about the millions of dollars it spends on its police officer’s and ambulances, not to mention the property damage, medical bills incurred at Parkland Hospital and other facilities and loss of life and injuries sustained by innocent drivers.