Yakima Police say the recent addition of weekly traffic emphasis patrols isn't just seasonal it's a the way the department will operate going forward. Capt. Jay Seely simply says traffic enforcement reduces crime. Criminals need transportation to commit crimes and police say they want to disrupt that. Plus they say many areas around the city need more traffic patrol because people are speeding and running red lights. Police are getting lots of help in finding the problem areas of the city through social media. Last month the city started a program through social media asking residents in identifying areas or roadways where drivers speed run red lights or pay more attention to phones then they do the road. Seely says police have received hundreds of responses of people hoping for better traffic control. Police have put together a list of problem areas and now each week officers will choose a roadway, neighborhood or area of the city where residents have identified a problem and focus traffic enforcement efforts in that area. So if you see more police in your neighborhood now you know why.
Last month police released information saying so far this year 275 collisions have been reported within Yakima city limits. Authorities say there are two main reasons for the high number of collisions, inattention to what other drivers are doing and following too close to other vehicles.
Officers have already started the emphasis patrols stopping vehicles warning some drivers while ticketing others. During each week police say they're stopping numerous vehicles.  Department officials urge people to check out the Yakima Police Department Facebook and Twitter pages and list concerns about a roadway, neighborhood or area where more police are needed to help create a safer situation.