After several months of heavy enforcement on Revereâ€™s roads, the message is getting out to aggressive drivers that Revere Police will no longer tolerate nonsense.
Traffic Division Sgt. Chris Giannino told the Journal that Chief Joe Cafarelli has dedicated more staff to the Traffic Division â€“ and with the help of three state grant programs â€“ they have issued over two times more moving violations than in 2011.
Figures from the Revere Police showed that, from January to August of 2011, there were 629 moving violations reported. Meanwhile, duringÂ that same time period this year, the RPD reported 1,347 violations.
â€œEnforcement is being done,â€ said Giannino. â€œWe are not out there nit-picking. Weâ€™re getting the worst of the worst. Itâ€™s not little things or a high school kid who makes a wrong turn out of the parking lot and does something unwise. Weâ€™re targeting aggressive drivers that are going to kill someone on our worst roadways.â€
Giannino said the three grants included the â€˜Click It or Ticketâ€™ campaign from May 14th to June 3rd, and the â€˜Drive Sober or Get Pulled Overâ€™ campaign from Aug. 15th to Sept. 3.
He said during those campaigns they targeted traffic enforcement on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays in accident-prone areas like North Shore, Copeland Circle, Washington Avenue and Squire Road.
For the first campaign, the RPD stopped 259 drivers and wrote 258 citations. For the second campaign, they made 288 stops and wrote 287 citations.
The third grant, a state pedestrian safety grant, was concentrated in areas where accidents involving pedestrians have been common â€“ such as outside the trains stations, at the Showcase Cinema and near the schools.
In addition to two arrests made using that grant from June to September, there were 349 stops and 332 citations issued.
However, the bigger effort came through a brainstorming session where Giannino and Chief Cafarelli decided to match the pedestrian grant with local funds â€“ specifically, they used overtime money from the budget to extend the grant.
The results were very successful, Giannino said.
From July through October, some 500 citations were issued by the officers running the program. Officers were assigned to specific areas over a four-hour period, issuing citations to drivers who were overly aggressive.
â€œUnder that program, it costs us about $150 per hour to put the officer on the street, but during that four-hour period, they were averaging about $1,300 per hour in citations,â€ said Giannino. â€œReally, just one ticket pays for that officerâ€™s cost. It ends up not costing the City a dime and itâ€™s making our streets a lot safer.â€
Giannino also said the RPD Traffic Division is about to start another enforcement grant over the Thanksgiving weekend, and theyâ€™ll have an aggressive enforcement campaign over Christmas as well.
â€œWeâ€™ll be back out there focusing on the worst of the worst,â€ said Giannino.