Tag Archives: Ohio State Highway Patrol

Distracted Driver Enforcement Push Announced By OSP

Presented By Atomic Speedway

(UPDATED 4/6/21)
April is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month and the Chillicothe Post of the Ohio State Highway Patrol is reminding drivers to keep their eyes and their focus on the roadway while driving.

Over the last five years, 212 people lost their lives as a result of distracted driving. During this same timeframe, distracted driving led to 66,181 crashes in Ohio. Statistics show that male drivers accounted for 55 percent of all distracted driving crashes and 64 percent of the related fatal crashes. Nearly one in three distracted drivers were between the ages of 16 and 24 years old. Because drivers are reluctant to admit to distracted driving, the actual number of distracted driving crashes, injuries and deaths are believed to be significantly higher.

“Distracted driving must become as culturally unacceptable as impaired driving is today. They’re equally avoidable and equally dangerous,” said Governor Mike DeWine. “Allowing something to take your focus off the roadway is irresponsible and the consequences can be troubling for Ohio families.”

On October 29, 2018, Ohio passed House Bill 95, a law which broadened what is considered distracted driving and increased the fine if it was a contributing factor to the commission of the driving violation.

“When you take your eyes off the road – even for just a few seconds – you are putting your life and the lives of others in danger,” Lt. Karwatske, Commander of the Chillicothe Post said. “There is nothing more important than the safety of yourself, your passengers and other motorists – everything else can wait.”

Distracted driving is any non-driving activity with the potential to distract a person from the primary task of driving and increase the risk of crashing. Distractions can be visual, taking eyes off of the road; manual, taking hands off the wheel; or cognitive, taking the mind off driving. Texting while driving is an example that results in all three types of distraction. Sending or receiving a text message takes a driver’s eyes off the road for an average of 4.6 seconds, the equivalent of driving the length of an entire football field when traveling at 55 mph.

As a reminder, Ohio law bans all electronic wireless communication device usage for drivers under 18. Texting while driving is illegal for all drivers and is a secondary offense for adults 18 and above.

(ORIGINATED 4/3/21)

(COLUMBUS) – The Ohio State Highway Patrol is teaming up with other members of the 6-State Trooper Project to focus on the enforcement of distracted driving laws. The push begins April 5th and runs through April 12th.

The high-visibility enforcement will also include state police agencies out of Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

Between 2016 and 2020, distracted driving resulted in 212 deaths on Ohio’s roadways. Sending or receiving a text message takes a driver’s eyes off the road for an average of 4.6 seconds, the equivalent of driving the length of an entire football field when traveling at 55 mph.

“By driving distracted, you are putting yourself and the lives of others at risk,” said Colonel Richard S. Fambro. “Every time someone takes their eyes off the road – even for just a split second, its consequences can be devastating.”

On October 29, 2018, Ohio passed House Bill 95, a law which broadened what is considered distracted driving and increased the fine if it was a contributing factor to the commission of the driving violation.

Distracted driving is any non-driving activity with the potential to distract a person from the primary task of driving and increase the risk of crashing. Distractions can be visual, taking eyes off of the road; manual, taking hands off the wheel; or cognitive, taking the mind off driving. Texting while driving is an example that results in all three types of distraction.

The 6-State Trooper Project is a multi-state law enforcement partnership aimed at providing combined and coordinated law enforcement and security services in the areas of highway safety, criminal patrol and intelligence sharing.

Ohio State Highway Patrol Looks For Auxiliary Members

Presented By McDonald’s, I’m Lovin’ It!

Lieutenant Tim Karwatske, Chillicothe Post Commander of the Ohio State Highway Patrol

The Ohio State Highway Patrol Auxiliary is an all-volunteer force that provides assistance to troopers in the course of their duties. Crash scene and traffic stop assistance, traffic control, disaster relief and special detail support are among the duties of an Auxiliary officer.

“We’re always looking for some help” Lt. Tim Karwatske, Chillicothe Post Commander, told Litter Media Thursday. “They’re not actually troopers or police officers, they don’t have arrest powers, but they can help supplement our forces in other ways.”

Karwatske says auxiliary members who ride with troopers can help with forms and take statements and assist by watching prisoners for a trooper. “They can help us if we’re inventorying vehicles, and gather evidence in certain circumstances. They can come into the post if it’s a real busy day and help answer phones” which is very handy during inclement weather as in recent weeks.

The OSHP Auxiliary was formed in 1942 when many commissioned troopers began entering the armed forces during World War II. At that time, membership was limited to members of the American Legion, which was largely made up of war veterans unlikely to be drafted into service.

After the war, the Auxiliary was a critical component of Ohio’s Civil Defense Plan, with officers assigned to vital crossroads to assist with evacuation and convoy movement.

Karwatske said interested persons should visit www.statepatrol.ohio.gov. “That basically puts them in touch with the Columbus recruitment office and then go from there.”

Today, Auxiliary members contribute thousands of hours in an assortment of functions. Each is required to log a minimum of 120 hours per year to remain active. 

Current requirements to become an Auxiliary are:

  • Must have valid Ohio driver license
  • Age 21-57 (except for retired OSHP officers)
  • Good physical condition
  • High school diploma or GED
  • No felony convictions
  • Pass a background investigation
  • Pre-employment polygraph exam
  • Ability to communicate in a clear manner
  • Availability for training and service

Applicants must pass a medical exam, which must be conducted by a physician at their own expense. Applicants must also pass written and physical tests. Auxiliary members are required to conform to grooming standards and purchase a uniform.

Physical Agility Test

To be conducted at a local Highway Patrol post:

  • Run: 1.5 mile run at the 20th percentile time indicated by the Cooper Institute standards for the applicant’s age and gender.
  • Push-ups: Minimum number of pushups indicated by the 20th percentile of the Cooper Institute standards for the applicant’s age and gender.
  • Sit-ups: Minimum number of sit-ups indicated by the 20th percentile of the Cooper Institute standards for the applicant’s age and gender.

Background Investigation

The following issues in an applicant’s background may result in rejection of an application:

  • Domestic violence conviction
  • Drug-related conviction
  • Excessive use of alcohol
  • Anti-social behavior
  • Poor driving record (numerous crashes or moving violations)

To inquire about a possible position in the OSHP Auxiliary, call your nearest Patrol post, email OSPAux@dps.ohio.gov, or apply online.