Yakima Police Department emphasis patrols are ongoing in the city of Yakima with officers now concentrating efforts on speed around construction zones. Police say they're concerned about an increase in vehicle crashes and people getting injured. Not only drivers but pedestrians as well. A 26-year-old woman was struck by a vehicle while crossing Tieton Drive at 40th Avenue on Monday. The woman remains in critical condition at Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital. Police say during the first five months of the year police investigated more than 800 crashes in the city. Many of the crashes say police are because drivers aren't paying attention or are distracted.
Authorities have been conducting emphasis patrols since the beginning of the year with an average of about 200 stops every week with some drivers getting warnings others being cited. Last week the patrols started focusing on area neighborhoods looking for speeders.
Police are asking drivers to slow down and pay attention especially around city construction zones where workers are busy rebuilding roadways like on North 1st Street in Yakima.

On Tuesday the Yakima City Council requested a report on street racing to be in front of the council at the next city council meeting. Some people in the city are telling city council members they want help with street racing problems in specific areas of the city including parts of West Valley.
Officers are giving special attention to city street projects looking for drivers speeding in and around construction zones.

The emphasis patrols aren't just happening in the spring and summer months. Capt. Seely says the patrols are now part of department policy and they're conducted every week of the year within city limits with the help of people telling police about problem areas on the department Facebook page.


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