Hudson Valley drivers were tickets over 60 percent more than other New York drivers during a recent crackdown.

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Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that New York State Police and another law enforcement agency issued 444 tickets during last week's Operation Hardhat, an initiative between law enforcement entities to crack down on work zone violations and highlight the importance of safe driving when encountering construction, maintenance and emergency operations along state highways.

Operation Hardhat details were held in almost every region of New York State in support of National Work Zone Awareness Week, which took place from April 26 to April 30.

The enforcement and educational efforts come as New York State continues to experience a rising number of work zone intrusions, including three recent crashes that injured six highway workers just last week, officials say.

During Operation Hardhat, members of law enforcement patrol Department of Transportation and Thruway Authority work zones to enforce work zone speed limits and ensure that motorists are obeying flagging personnel.

Operation Hardhat details resulted in violations in almost every region of the state, including:

  • • Hudson Valley - 161
  • • Long Island - 59
  • • Capital Region - 53
  • • Central New York - 46
  • • Southern Tier - 44
  • • Mohawk Valley - 37
  • • Western New York - 26
  • • North Country - 18

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Under "Operation Hardhat," police officers are present within the work zones, dressed as highway maintenance workers, to identify motorists who are distracted by electronic devices while driving, disobey flagging personnel, speed through the work zone or violate the state's Move Over Law, which applies to both emergency and maintenance vehicles. Additional details will be held throughout the construction season, police say.

The 444 tickets issued during Operation Hardhat last week included the following violations:

  • • Speeding - 81
  • • Seatbelts - 41
  • • Cell Phone - 135
  • • Failure to Move Over - 47
  • • Failure to Obey Traffic Control Device - 1
  • • Other violations - 139


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