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For the next nine months, the Central Minnesota Reduction of Accidents for Safe Highways, or CRASH Task Force will target 30 local areas to improve traffic safety by raising public awareness and enforcing traffic regulations. For each operation, there will be ten or more patrol cars and officers wearing high-visibility vests that identify them as part of the task force. Signs will notify the drivers of what is going on and speeders, aggressive drivers and intoxicated drivers will be targets.

It is expected that the efforts will heighten local awareness of dangerous areas and reduce those who drive dangerously. Law enforcement from the State Patrol, Stearns County Sheriff’s Office, and St. Cloud, Sartell, Sauk Rapids, Waite Park, St. Joseph, Cold Spring, Sauk Centre, Melrose, Paynesville, Albany, Avon, Kimball, and Belgrade will be involved.

No matter what is done, drivers must always be aware of:

  • the amount and type of traffic sharing the highway with them. The traffic may be heavy or light and may include trucks, cars, motor homes, farm equipment, motorcycles and bicycles.
  • changing weather conditions—fog, snow, water and ice, for example—that affect visibility and road conditions.
  • the type of vehicle being driven, particularly the condition of the brakes and the weight of the vehicle, which affects braking ability.
  • the character of the highway the driver is traveling. Drivers should adjust their speed for hills or for winding and narrow roads.
  • the presence of intersections, railway grade crossings or pedestrians.

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