Speed emphasis patrols begin today across Snohomish County

Cops in Lynnwood and around Snohomish County have a simple message for drivers before they hit the road this weekend.

Slow down or pay up.

That’s the basis of a new speed emphasis campaign beginning today. Officers from every law enforcement agency in the county will be on the lookout for speeders, hoping to cut down on the number of speed-related crashes.

“Law enforcement officers will be targeting specific roadways that have shown to have a problem with speed-related crashes,” said Tracy McMillan, Snohomish County’s Target Zero Traffic Safety Task Force Manager. “Too many people are being injured or killed in these types of preventable crashes.”

It’s the type of accident that recently took the lives of two young men near Lynnwood High School.

21-year-old Brandon Norton and 20-year-old Ehlo Blacknall were killed when their speeding car hit a tree along North Road in November 2009.

Drivers whose speed contributed to fatal crashes are often young men. Among speeding drivers involved in deadly crashes, 88% were male and almost half were 25 years old or younger, according to the Washington Traffic Safety Commission.

Overall, there were 74 fatal crashes involving speeding between 2004 and 2008 in Snohomish County, resulting in a 78 deaths.

The extra patrols are being funded by the state.

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