Aggressive cars and trucks are targeted on I-75 - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Aggressive cars and trucks are targeted on I-75

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By Robin Jedlicka - bio | email

LOWNDES COUNTY, GA (WALB) - Reckless drivers, look out.  Today, the Georgia Department of Public Safety launched the fifth wave of the Georgia Targeting Aggressive Cars and Trucks, or TACT, program.

Officers will be on the road, looking for drivers who show risky driving behavior around big rigs. This week-long law enforcement area includes north and south-bound lanes on I-75, ranging all the way from Valdosta to mile marker 37 in Cook County.

This span of interstate was selected based on crash data.  Over the past three years, commercial motor vehicles have been involved in over 350 crashes in Lowndes and Cook Counties, resulting in almost 400 injuries and 20 fatalities.

Driving experts say most people simply don't understand the dangers of big-rigs. 

A car traveling 80 miles per hour only needs 160 feet to stop. Mike White, Commercial Truck Driving Program Coordinator for Valdosta Tech, explains, "Truck driving at that same rate of speed behind that car would take somewhere between 800 and 1200 feet to stop. There's no way that truck can stop. Most people driving the trucks and the cars don't realize how dangerous that situation is."

Officials from the area spoke about the importance of cautious driving around these massive trucks. "I often think about how Interstate 75, which has been an artery of economic development and an artery of transportation for this area, at times can also be an artery of tragedy, unfortunately," says Cook County Probate Judge Chase Daughtrey. 

The Lowndes County Sheriff's Office says this program has made a big impact in past years. "It's a very worthwhile program. I certainly think it's going to make a difference in the safety out on the roads," says Sheriff Chris Prine.

Their lesson is simple:  Simply leaving more space between you and a commercial motor vehicle will ensure safe travels.

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