DPS cracks down on notoriously deadly and dangerous stretch of SR 347 near Maricopa

Posted at 6:30 AM, Mar 30, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-30 15:02:12-04

The Arizona Department of Public Safety is cracking down on a particularly dangerous and downright deadly section of State Route 347 between Interstate 10 and the town of Maricopa.

On Wednesday, a squad of troopers set up along the 14 mile stretch of highway and drivers were stopped for a host of violations. 

"He says I was speeding," said driver Gina Richardson.  

Richardson says, like a lot of valley roadways, it seems like she needs to speed just to keep up with the flow of traffic.

-Final Four Fan Guide: What to know about Fan Fest, concerts, parking & games
-Four students in Chandler arrested for hazing crimes at Hamilton High School
-Body found in trunk of burning car in north Phoenix

"We commonly see people speeding, real close to your rear and almost aggressively getting you over so they can speed ahead," added Richardson.

Troopers say speed is just one factor for the increased enforcement.

"In the last year, this part of 347 has seen its share of serious injury collisions as well as fatalities," said Sgt. Ed McNeill.

A search of the ABC15 archives revealed at least six deaths, and 19 serious injuries in 2016 on SR 347.

DPS says the danger really ramps up when the sun goes down and the speeds increase.

"When you are traveling 90, to 100 miles an hour, especially at night, you are well out driving the distance your headlights are shining," said Sgt. McNeill.

DPS says the intense enforcement operations will continue at random days and times to get the message across to drivers to slow down.