Nick McWilliams reporting – The Canton post of the Ohio State Highway Patrol is hoping to remind drivers of safe driving habits on Friday.

In partnership with other law enforcement agencies like the Canton Police Department, Stark County Sheriff’s Office and Jackson Township Police Department, among others, the post is enacting a one day, high visibility traffic safety initiative.

According to Lieutenant Leo Shirkey, the goal is not to try to issue multiple violations, but to remind the public to approach driving in as safe a manner as possible every day.

“We’re not going to go out and write a bunch of tickets. But, it’s just, being out there, they’ll see our lights flashing, and that is sometimes enough for people to understand or remind themselves, maybe I’m driving too fast or I’m following that car in front of me too closely. Or I forgot to put my seatbelt on.”

Shirkey says the post will schedule initiatives when they feel fatality numbers are rising, or weather changes can cause different driving hazards.

“I may pick a time, like when our fatalities are starting to go up. We want to bring that heightened sense of awareness out there. Just to remind people [to] be cognizant of your driving. Pay attention to your driving. That should be the most important thing you’re focused on as you’re out there on the road.”

Currently, Stark county has seen six traffic accident related fatalities this year.

He also reminds motorists to try and leave earlier for appointments or work to prevent speeding, and to monitor speeds and pay close attention to roadways even with better weather rolling in.

The March 15th initiative will run all 24-hours of Friday.

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