ST. LOUIS — The Missouri State Highway Patrol said it issued 598 speeding tickets statewide last weekend as part of a high-speed enforcement campaign.
Of those citations, 200 were for drivers going 20 mph or more over the speed limit.
The five-state campaign was part of an effort to address "a drastic increase in egregious speed and hazardous moving violations during the COVID-19 pandemic," MSHP said.
Despite traffic volume lowering significantly for a period of time, fatal crashes are up 16% compared to last year.
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MSHP said speed is one of the leading contributors to those fatal crashes. Across the state this year, troopers have seen a 58% increase in speeds at or above 26 mph over the speed limit compared to the four-year average. Most of those violations happen during the weekend.
"There is never a good reason for a motorist to exceed the speed limit and endanger others. Virus or not, troopers remain vigilant and are enforcing the law," MSHP said in a release.
Here is the breakdown of all of MSHP's activities during the campaign, which ran from noon to midnight on July 17 and 18:
- Citations for moving violations: 668
- Warnings: 1,256
- Traffic stops: 2,557
- Speed citations: 598
- Seat belt citations: 264
- Motorist assists: 513
- Crashes: 119
Iowa, Arkansas, Nebraska and Kansas also took part in the campaign.
The Missouri Department of Transportation said last week that traffic had rebounded to nearly pre-pandemic levels.