The Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office Traffic Safety Unit was created in 1997 under the direction of Sheriff John Whetsel, a strong traffic safety advocate and chair of the National Sheriffs’ Association Traffic Safety Committee. This specialty unit consists of deputies trained in identifying areas where a high number of injury or fatality traffic accidents occur. Special emphasis is placed on observing these locations for traffic violations that contribute to the problem.
This unit not only focuses on traffic enforcement, but also participates in community service projects like safety awareness events, parades, marathon security, funeral services, and dignitary escorts. Deputies applying for this unit must complete a board interview and motorcycle aptitude test. After being accepted, deputies must complete 80 hours of motorcycle operational training prior to performing official duties, eight hours of recurring training every month, and advanced crash investigation.
The Sheriff’s Office operates eight 2009 Harley-Davidson® Electra Glide® motorcycles with Decatur integrated radar, L3 communications camera systems, and Whelen lighting systems. Sheriff John Whetsel, in his fourth term, is committed to keeping the citizens of Oklahoma County safe on the roads.
Over the past 12 years since the inception of the Traffic Safety Unit, the traffic crash rate has been cut by 92% and the crime rate has dropped by 87% in the Sheriff’s Office jurisdictional area while the population has soared. So, buckle up and obey all traffic laws, or you might just get to meet one of these traffic deputy units personally!