An additional full time patrol unit is set to perform more in-depth safety inspections on the West Virginia Turnpike within the coming weeks.

According to the West Virginia Parkways Authority, the PSC and the West Virginia State Police, the new officer will be certified and trained by the Transportation Division of the Public Service Commission to issue speeding and defective equipment citations to drivers of commercial motor vehicles.

This position was created after a marked increase in accidents involving large trucks. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, crashes involving large trucks have increased from 327,000 in 2013 to 475,000 in 2016. In West Virginia, there were 58 accidents resulting in 34 injuries and one fatality in 2013 and in 2017, there were 120 accidents resulting in 71 injuries and nine fatalities.

According to the WVPA, the officer will enforce speed limits and perform safety inspections to make certain the commercial vehicles are in compliance with the U.S. Department of Transportation safety regulations.

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