Traffic enforcement strategies




Each Traffic Unit car is equipped with both radar and laser speed measuring devices. Brunswick is a member of the Medina Safe Communities Coalition and participates in the Ohio Department of Public Safety’s traffic enforcement educational and enforcement blitzes through the Ohio Traffic Safety Office. Because of our participation, we have won several pieces of traffic enforcement equipment.

In 2009 the Traffic Unit participated in the national and state programs mentioned above, such as the Click It or Ticket and Drive Sober, or Get Pulled Over campaigns and were entered into a drawing. We won a handheld laser (right) and a new Dodge Charger that has been made part of the Traffic Unit fleet.


Neighborhood traffic complaints

For current complaints in progress, a traffic or patrol officer will be dispatched to investigate the complaint and take the appropriate enforcement action.

For complaints not in progress, the Traffic Sergeant assigns a traffic unit officer to periodically check the area. The checks are tracked through the dispatch computer system.

Repeated traffic complaints in the same area will be handled as follows:

  • Speed Awareness sign deployed (approx. one week)
  • Enforcement by traffic officers, supplemented by patrol officers
  • Analysis of time, speed and traffic date collected by the sign.

To ask about having the Division speed monitor sign placed in your neighborhood, or for other traffic concerns, contact the Traffic Sergeant, Sgt. Mike Matheis, at or 330-225-9111.

Speeding is a leading cause of crashes and is the number one complaint the BPD Traffic Unit receives. According to a US Department of Justice (DOJ) study, drivers make calculated decisions to speed. Police have the means to alter these calculations.

While visible enforcement is valuable, the DOJ also recommends that drivers should not be able to easily detect when and where speed enforcement is occurring.  For this reason, regular patrol officers do enforce traffic laws using their highly visible black-and-whites, but the Traffic Unit uses less conspicuous cruisers. We are trying to alter the decision that drivers make when they decide to speed.

For our new traffic cruisers we obtained Dodge Chargers, since they look different from all the Fords in our cruiser fleet.  They are distinctively marked as police cars and have flashing lights on their roofs, so they comply with Ohio law for a traffic enforcement car, but they are different from our black-and-white fleet and should help us in accomplishing our goals.

By the way, the DOJ study specifies the following responses to speeding as having limited effectiveness: reducing speed limits, increasing fines, erecting stop signs, and installing speed bumps.

Distracted driving, from using cell phones, especially texting, while driving, is becoming a major concern to traffic safety experts. Please view a video about the dangers here. Warning: this video contains disturbing content and is not for younger children. Drivers are reminded that Brunswick City Ordinance 432.34 states, “No person shall operate a vehicle without giving his full time and attention to the operation of such vehicle.”

Brian Ohlin of the Brunswick Division of Police and a Highway Patrol Trooper/Pilot prepare for a TRIAD mission over Interstate 71 in Brunswick.

Brunswick PD cruisers and Highway Patrol cruisers await calls from the plane.

A view of North Carpenter Road and Interstate 71 from OSP plane

Interstate 71 is identified by the Scripps Howard study as being the deadliest road in Medina County. It travels through our city and our police and fire divisions respond to crashes on the Brunswick section. For this reason, the Traffic Unit enforces traffic violations on the interstate. We work together with the Ohio State Highway Patrol (OSP) in Operation TRIAD (Targeting Reckless, Intimidating and Aggressive Drivers), which uses OSP aircraft to observe violations from the air and radio cruisers on the ground.

Drunk driving has had a devastating effect on our community. The most obvious example occurred in 2007 when a Brunswick family’s minivan was struck by an intoxicated driver and a young girl was killed. A year later the Medina County OVI Task Force was created in an effort to get all county law enforcement agencies to cooperate in attacking this problem, and it has been very successful. On target nights, officers from several departments work in one specific area and saturate the area to target drunk drivers.

We also assist the Highway Patrol in sobriety checkpoints in which all drivers on a particular road are briefly stopped and checked for evidence of intoxication.

We use our cable channels and websites in an effort to educate drivers about the dangers of drunk drivers. Additionally, the BPD has officers that work in the local schools and educate the younger population.