UAF Police Intensify Traffic Stops, Ticketing

FAIRBANKS, Alaska – Ever since Alaska received $161,728 in federal grants from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the number of traffic stops made by University of Alaska, Fairbanks (UAF) police has increased dramatically.

The university police department is participating in the NHTSA-implemented Special Traffic Enforcement Program (STEP), which is aimed at reducing drunk driving and promoting seatbelt usage. In the Aug. 21 to Sept. 21 time span alone, the number of vehicles pulled over by campus police increased to 404, up 228 from last year.

The passage of SB 86 in January allowed Alaska police officers to pull over and ticket drivers not wearing seatbelts. Not wearing a seatbelt had always been against the law, but before police officers could only stop drivers if they had another reason to do so.

Though some students have voiced concerns about how the new ticketing policies target them specifically, the UAF Police Department has assured them that the new policies have been implemented state-wide.

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