FARMINGTON — Farmington Police Department officers will check for speeders during 140 special patrols in the coming year, thanks to a $20,000 federal grant from the Bureau of Highway Safety.

The Board of Selectmen accepted the grant Tuesday.

“The message the department wants to get out to the public is to please slow down,” police Chief Jack Peck told the board.

The department has dealt with several instances of criminal speed this year, including one driver going 92 mph on Knowlton Corner Road, Peck said. 

Officers will work in problem areas of town, including the Wilton Road, a stretch of Routes 2 and 4. They also will focus on speed complaints from residents, according to the application written by Sgt. Michael Adcock.

There were 387 traffic accidents in Farmington in 2014, including one fatal crash on Lucy Knowles Road. There were 103 crashes on Wilton Road, 26 on Farmington Falls Road, 64 on Main Street and 194 on other roads, Adcock reported on the application. 

There were 378 crashes in Farmington in 2013, down from totals of well over 400 in 2009, 2010 and 2011.

There have been 49 speed-related fatalities throughout the state during the year, Peck said. The goal is to reduce that number.

“We’re encouraging voluntary compliance,” he said.

There is no matching amount needed for the grant and no quotas on tickets issued, he said.  Peck told the board he could not see any downside to accepting the grant.

The department also intends to apply for grants to hold seat belt enforcement and driving under the influence patrols, Peck said.

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