Operation Southern Slowdown looks to catch reckless drivers across Georgia

GEORGIA — From speeding suspects attempting to flee from police to dangerous drivers weaving in and out traffic showing no regard for other drivers, our roads and highways have become more dangerous.

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Drivers Channel 2′s Michael Seiden spoke to told us that since the pandemic began in 2020, they have noticed an uptick in aggressive and angry drivers who are weaving in and out of traffic, showing no regard for other drivers on highways.

In fact, the need for speed has not only caught the attention of law enforcement, but many metro Atlanta drivers as well.

“You didn’t see that Mustang that just went by? I think speed is a major problem!” driver Shannon McDonald said.

“Definitely angrier. More aggressive. How about speed? For sure. yeah. I live in the city, so I see wrecks all day and all the time,” driver Lauren Casto said.

It’s one of the driving forces behind “Operation Southern Slowdown.”


Now in its sixth year, state troopers and local law enforcement agencies in five Southeastern states, including Georgia, will spend the next week cracking down on speeding and reckless drivers on state highways and interstates.

The increased patrols come at a time when law enforcement agencies are reporting a substantial increase in the number of cars traveling at speeds above 100 miles per hour since the start of the pandemic.

“I don’t like driving. Nine out of 10 times I want to be in the passenger seat,” Casto said.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there was a more than 6% increase in deadly traffic accidents, from 2019 to 2020.

And in 2020, speed was a factor in 29% of all traffic accidents.

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Data shows that almost one out of every three speeding drivers involved in a deadly crash didn’t have a valid driver’s license.

During the first five years of Operation Southern Slowdown, Georgia troopers, deputies and officers gave out more than 55,000 speeding tickets 9,900 seat belt citations, and 2,100 citations for children under eight not riding in an approved child safety seat.

Law enforcement officers arrested 3,255 drivers for DUI and 3,488 persons for driving without a valid license.

NHTSA wants to remind drivers to

  • Give speeding drivers plenty of space.
  • If speeding drivers are following too closely, allow them to pass.
  • Stay out of the far-left lane unless they are passing another vehicle.
  • Always wear a seat belt.