Dwight E. Radcliff, Sheriff of Pickaway County, announces today the receipt of a grant to begin a new “Safe Communities” Program in Pickaway County. “I am pleased to announce this new program to be known as the ‘Safe Communities Program of Pickaway County’, and the opportunity to do all we can to reduce the number of traffic fatalities on the roadways of our community”, stated Sheriff Radcliff. “It is imperative to not only enforce the laws regarding traffic safety, but to continue our efforts to improve visibility of my deputies and to add education to complete our vision of a safer Pickaway County.”

The grant through the Ohio Department of Public Safety’s Traffic Safety Office, is funded by monies provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The Safe Communities approach is to create a community-based initiative where the expansion of resources and partnerships brings awareness for the need of traffic safety education and public awareness. The program, although granted to the Pickaway County Sheriff’s Office, is for all sectors of the Pickaway County Community. A Coalition will be formed with members from law enforcement, education, emergency services, business, and the general public. The mission of a Safe Community is to create safety programs that will lend to reducing traffic-related injuries and fatalities. In Pickaway County last year, there were 9 fatal traffic accidents and 14 fatal traffic accidents in 2008.

“The need to add awareness of traffic safety issues with enforcement is a great concern for my Office, especially for our younger drivers,” noted Sheriff Radcliff. “Awareness and education is key to saving lives.”

The Pickaway County Sheriff’s Office currently holds a grant through the Ohio Traffic Safety Office for High Visibility Enforcement during major Holidays and National Mobilizations Blitzes such a “Click It Or Ticket and “Over the Limit, Under Arrest”. This new grant will add to the efforts of the Sheriff’s Office to make traffic safety a priority of the Office, and for the safety of citizens and visitors to the area.

“If through education, we can get people to realize how they can increase their safety by merely putting on a seatbelt or not driving impaired, we have succeeded and used this grant well,” Sheriff Radcliff said. “The costs associated with the loss of life cannot be measured in dollars and cents, especially to those who lose someone they care about”.

For more information regarding the new “Safe Communities Program of Pickaway County”, contact the Pickaway County Sheriff’s Office at (740) 420-5794. For information on traffic related issues and programs, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration at www.nhtsa.gov