The Traffic Unit was established in 2008 in response to the Washington State Patrol’s consolidation and withdrawal from investigating traffic collisions on county roadways. The traffic unit has morphed over the years from a stand-alone unit consisting of five (5) deputies and a sergeant to currently seven (7) patrol deputies who are assigned additional traffic duties and responsibilities.
Traffic enforcement duties include traffic law enforcement and education, DUI enforcement, reporting and investigating collisions and addressing neighborhood traffic complaints.
There are two (2) deputies and two (2) detectives who have specialized collision investigation training for felony and fatal collisions. Three are technical investigators and one is a reconstruction-level investigator.
Specialized survey-style equipment, a FARO 3D Laser Scanner, is used to collect digital data to map and diagram collision scenes. The use of this technology allows for additional evidence to be collected in a faster manner than before. The use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV’s/drones) is in the infancy stage for use in collecting additional data at crash and crime scenes. The use of FARO 3D Laser Scanners and UAV’s aid in keeping roadways open and allowing the motoring public to move about the roadways, while deputies can collect needed evidence for their investigations.
The Sheriff’s Office maintains multiple traffic speed trailers that are deployed at community and deputy requests to various neighborhoods throughout the county. These trailers are radar equipped and have digital display that shows the motoring public their speed and alerts them to excessive speeds. Some trailers are equipped and able to collect traffic data in relation to speeds, traffic counts, and traffic flow. No trailer is equipped with photo enforcement and no direct enforcement can be made from the data collected by these trailers. Data is only used for education and planning.
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