MOULTRIE -- The Moultrie Police Department has reported a drop in the number of traffic accidents from the September to December 2003 quarter to the January to March 2004 quarter.
The year 2003 ended with 351 total accidents and collisions reported in the last quarter involving 665 vehicles. But only 237 have been reported, comprising 457 vehicles, so far in 2004. That breaks down to an average of 2.9 accidents a day for the end of 2003 and 2.6 a day so far in 2004.
Of the 351 accidents reported for last quarater of 2003, 65 of those were classified as "hit and runs," where at least one of the drivers involved left the scene. That number dropped to 41 hit-and-runs of the 237 accidents so far in 2004.
Only one accident was fatal to a pedestrian in the fourth quarter of 2003, and there have not been any reported fatalities in the first quarter of 2004. There were 95 people reporting an injury in the last quarter of 2003 but only 73 injuries for 2004.
Accidents caused as a result of alcohol or drug use also decreased in the first quarter of 2004. There were 18 accidents in the last three months of 2003 where at least one of the drivers was affected by alcohol or drugs, but only six accidents in 2004 were alcohol- or drug-related.
Officers issued 246 tickets to drivers in 2003 fourth quarter and 141 tickets have been issued in 2004. Of those tickets issued, 85 in 2003 fourth quarter were related to traffic accidents, and 87 tickets have been issued in relation to accidents in 2004.
A large majority of tickets issued in both the last quarter of 2003 and 2004 have been related to speeding and drivers not wearing their seat belts. As part of the statewide "Click It Or Ticket" and 'Operation Zero Tolerance" campaigns, police will continue to issue citations to drivers not wearing safety belts or believed to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs, a police spokesman said.
These numbers reflect only those accidents reported within the corporate limits of the city of Moultrie investigated by Moultrie Police. A total of eight accidents in both the last quarter of 2003 and 2004 were not included in these figures. Those accidents within Moultrie city limits involved city-owned vehicles and were investigated by the Colquitt County Sheriff's Department and/or Georgia State Patrol.
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