(Juneau) The Dodge County Sheriff’s Office will continue to focus efforts on crash reduction in 2018. Sheriff Dale Schmidt identified the need to reduce fatal accidents as one of his top performance objectives this year when he was our guest recently on WBEV’s Community Comment. He says his deputies cannot be everywhere but they are going to do their best to mitigate crashes and get people to slow down. The annual performance objectives serve as a guideline for the department and is a way for the public to know the areas of focus for the upcoming year. The crash reduction effort was a response to the high number of traffic related fatalities Dodge County experienced in 2017. The 21 traffic deaths were ten more than the five-year average. Schmidt says he has already seen an impact since the official launch in November. He says folks have already approached him and said that they have changed their driving habits because of the initiative. Schmidt says there will always be offenders but notes that if the effort can get a few people to change their driving habits it could have a big effect on the number of fatalities. Sheriff’s Captain Chad Enright says increasing police involvement is an effective way to deter potential speeders and stop sign violators. He says it is easy for drivers to be focused on other things than driving and might not notice they are speeding. The sheriff’s department will continue to have squad cars and signs posted in hotspot areas that include Highway’s 151, 33, and 16/60.