Detroit Police crackdown amid spike in traffic crashes

The city of Detroit is seeing more and more cases of reckless driving that result in tragic consequences. Now the Detroit Police Department set up a sting to ticket those disobeying traffic laws.

It's called Traffic Safety Blitz and is exactly what you think it is. Detroit Police started hearing a number of complaints from Detroiters about the rising number of crashes in the city and is working to stop hit-and-runs and speeding off from police stops.

"The Chargers and Challengers that taking off from traffic stops, hit-and-run auto accidents, and constant speeding," Officer Branden Baxtresser said.

"Our top priority is keeping our community safe," DPD Chief James White said. "Getting our officers into the veins of the neighborhood with a focus on traffic enforcement."

The ones they're looking for are exactly what happened Thursday evening when a car ran into an ambulance, causing it to roll over.

"We’re going to be doing traffic enforcement in the neighborhoods - this is an open book test," White said.

On Friday, more than 40 officers sent out for traffic stops. This is part of White's plans to tackle the problem in the neighborhood.

The traffic enforcement comes when some crime in the city is down but other crime is up.

"We still sit at a very small reduction of homicide, but a reduction all the same. 15% to 20% reduction in non-fatal shootings," White said. "We’ve seen an uptick in carjackings."

DPD officials say, although there have been some reports of false carjackings, it is up 40% from last year.

Chief White makes it clear this Traffic Safety Blitz is not an effort to reach a ticket quota.

"People think tickets mean quotas. We're not talking about that. We're we’re talking traffic enforcement," he said. "You can get a ticket but not mandating ticket. if the officer advises release that’s OK too

As officers increase their presence in the neighborhoods many say residents are grateful for their efforts

"(They) say thank you we see you in the neighborhood we appreciate you in the neighborhoods," Braxtresser said.