Garden City PD grapples with rise in traffic crashes

More than 300,000 drivers pass through Garden City (KBOI Staff)

Officers in Garden City are buckling down on bad driving.

They say as of this week, there will be an increase in traffic enforcement, and yes, that likely means more tickets.

"We are not the only department that is having problems with traffic," said Sergeant Blair Brannan, Patrol Sergeant for Garden City PD.

Brannan has been an officer in Garden City for 24 years. He says as the city's population grows, so do the number of traffic crashes.

ACHD estimates that on any given day more than 300,000 drivers pass through Garden City.

In the last year, the city has seen a 16-percent increase in traffic crashes.

The majority of crashes come down to three key issues, according to Brannan:

  1. Cars following to close to each other
  2. Inattentive or distracted driving
  3. Failure to yield

He also says that all three of those violations can be easily avoided, but he struggles to figure out how to get drivers to take the risks seriously.

So, for now, they'll start by handing out more tickets.

"[We're] out there trying to change driving behavior and sometimes driving behavior is changed by the issuance of a citation," said Brannan. "The one wish I have, and I wish everybody would do it, [is] put down your phone! Do the task at hand. Is it really that important to pick up your phone and possibly cause an accident, injury, or a death?"

Garden City Police say they will continue their heightened enforcement for as long as it takes to get the message across.

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