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State honors sheriffs office
Recognized for traffic safety
sheriffs award
Members of the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office received four awards at a luncheon last week in Macon. - photo by Submitted
The Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office has won four statewide traffic safety awards.

The awards were presented to the agency last week during the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety Governor’s Challenge Luncheon in Macon.

Forsyth County Sheriff Ted Paxton said in a statement that he was “honored to receive these awards.”

“It clearly recognizes our proactive approach in combating vehicle crashes, fatalities and impaired driving,” he said.

The challenge program is a competition between similar-sized law enforcement agencies statewide.

The sheriff’s office has won first place in its size category four of the past five years.

It also received three specialty traffic safety awards for occupant protection, motorcycle safety and efforts to combat impaired driving.

The commendations are given for notable efforts in educating residents, enforcing state traffic laws and contributing to reducing impaired driving, vehicle crashes and injuries from crashes.

The awards are the latest in a successful stretch for the sheriff’s office, which captured national honors for its efforts in promoting traffic safety at the recent 2009 International Association of Chiefs of Police Conference in Denver.

The agency earned first place in its size category of the IACP Law Enforcement Challenge Program. It placed first in 2004 and 2006.

In addition, the sheriff’s office was awarded the IACP “Underage Alcohol Prevention” Specialty Award.

About a week earlier, it received a $101,630 Highway Enforcement of Aggressive Traffic, or HEAT, grant from the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety.

The grant will be used to increase safety on local roads, by reducing impaired driving crashes and excessive speeding, as well as raising safety belt use and educating the public about traffic safety.