YAMHILL COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE OBTAINS GRANT TO SUPPLEMENT TRAFFIC SAFETY
News Release from Yamhill Co. Sheriff's Office
Sheriff Svenson is pleased to announce that the Yamhill County Sheriff's Office has been awarded a grant from the Oregon Department of Transportation to combat fatal and serious injury crashes in the county. The Yamhill County Traffic Safety Deputy grant will fund a 1.0 FTE Traffic Safety Enforcement Deputy for 16 months (June 1, 2017 -- September 30, 2018), as well as select targeted overtime opportunities for focused enforcement. This pilot project will add to the existing countermeasures (DUII, Seat Belt, Rural Speed, etc.) currently being utilized by the YCSO to provide dedicated services and outreach specific to traffic safety.
In addition to the 3.5% population increase between April 2010 and July 2015, the county has seen a steady increase of total employment, growing 2.3% between 2013 and 2014, and continues to see expansion of current employers and an influx of new employers. The viticulture industry continues to grow, bringing both employees and tourists to the region, and Yamhill County's location that includes a nearby popular casino and a major thoroughfare to the Oregon Coast equates to more people traveling county roadways. For the past four years, in the area of speed alone, Yamhill County has ranked in the top four counties in the entire state for serious injury and fatal crashes. In 2015, Yamhill County ranked ninth overall for fatal crashes in the state and the third highest number of fatal and serious injury crashes on county roadways of any county in Oregon.
The pilot project will focus on public education and enforcement of traffic laws in order to enhance public safety of the citizens and visitors that travel Yamhill County roadways. If the countermeasure is as successful as expected in reducing fatal and serious injury crashes on county roadways, it is Sheriff Svenson's intention to use the positive impact of this ODOT-funded position to request a permanent allocation in the Office's discretionary fund from the Board of Commissioners. The data captured during this grant-funded period and the positive outcome we expect it to have on our ranking, equating to fewer serious and fatal crashes, will be significant evidence in support of permanent funding for this undertaking.