COLUMBIA – The South Carolina Department of Public Safety (SCDPS) will partner with five Southeastern states for Operation Southern Shield in an effort to reduce speed-related deaths and collisions on the roadways. The campaign will begin July 19 and will run through July 24.
The states participating include South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Florida, and Tennessee, which are part of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Region Four.
Operation Southern Shield is an annual mobilization effort, which began in 2017, and focuses on proactive enforcement of speed violations. The campaign occurs during the 100 Deadly Days of Summer, the period between Memorial Day and Labor Day when traffic fatalities typically increase. This is the fifth year that South Carolina has taken part in the multi-state effort.
In 2020, there were more than 10,900 speed-related collisions on South Carolina roadways during the 100 Deadly Days of Summer. That accounts for more than 30 percent of total collisions during that same period.
So far this year, 551 people have died on South Carolina roads, compared to 523 this time last year.
South Carolina Highway Patrol (SCHP) will join Georgia State Patrol (GSP) at a press event for Operation Southern Shield at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, July 20, at the Georgia I-20 Welcome Center in Augusta to inform the public about the effort. SCHP Col. Chris Williamson will speak about South Carolina efforts to reduce collisions and fatalities during the event.
In addition to the press event, SCDPS will run paid social media, as well as billboards for the entire month of July, focusing on speed enforcement. The ads will bring attention to the deadly consequences of speeding and feature the tagline, “Slow down. Speed kills.”
Operation Southern Shield is part of the SCDPS Target Zero campaign to reduce fatalities and collisions on South Carolina’s roadways.
The South Carolina Department of Public Safety includes the Highway Patrol, State Transport Police, Bureau of Protective Services, Office of Highway Safety and Justice Programs, and the South Carolina Law Enforcement Officers Hall of Fame. Our mission is to ensure public safety by protecting and serving the people of South Carolina and its visitors.