Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Austin Police Department Restructures Highway Enforcement Command

The Austin Police Department Highway Enforcement Command is being divided into four specialized units that will be used to enhance enforcement efforts on Austin roadways.

The sections are Highway Patrol and Response, DWI Enforcement, Vehicular Homicide and Air Enforcement. Each section brings uniquely trained officers together to provide support for each unit and to meet the growing challenges of traffic issues within the city.

Highway Patrol and Response Section: This section will provide rush hour collision and stalled vehicle coverage on major highways as well enforcing commercial motor vehicle carrier laws and responding to collisions during regular duty hours and after hours. The Highway Response Team will respond to traffic problems on highways and major roadways based on statistical data that includes collisions. The team will work in conjunction with the other command sections and outside agencies.

DWI Enforcement Section: Officers will enforce DWI laws throughout the city.

Vehicular Homicide Unit (formerly Major Traffic Investigations): This unit will investigate fatality and serious injury collisions. The Wrecker Unit and Vehicle Abatement are also included in this unit.

Air Enforcement Section: Utilizes the department's helicopter, Air 1, to expand the role of traffic enforcement.

Seventy officers have been assigned to the command. The Highway Patrol Units will be utilized to help clear freeways following collisions to improve the flow of traffic and to relieve patrol officers so they may return to their duties in their area commands.

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