Sterling Heights police Officer Scott DeMuynck demonstrates the use of a laser speed device.

Sterling Heights police Officer Scott DeMuynck demonstrates the use of a laser speed device.

Photo by Patricia O’Blenes

Traffic cops step into new ‘Roll’

By: Eric Czarnik | Sterling Heights Sentry | Published June 18, 2021


STERLING HEIGHTS — Summer may speed by quickly for a lot of people, but Sterling Heights traffic cops want to make sure the cars don’t do the same.

Starting June 18, the Sterling Heights Police Department began its new summer traffic law enforcement campaign, “Slow Your Roll.” During a June 15 ribbon-cutting ceremony at Van Dyke Avenue and 18 Mile Road to celebrate the new Van Dyke mile marker designs, city and police officials explained what the new traffic campaign means.

According to police, they will pay extra attention to Ryan Road and Metropolitan Parkway from now until the end of August. On June 17, Sterling Heights police Sgt. Aaron Susalla said the city plans to concentrate on Ryan between 14 Mile and 18 Mile roads, as well as all of Metro Parkway within the city limits.

“Officers will also be monitoring our other major city streets,” Susalla added in a text message.

The times and days of the week for enforcement are supposed to shift around, though police expect to focus on particular dates to apply even more attention to road patrols. Typically, three officers and a supervisor will collaborate during enforcement operations, and they will attempt to stop people running red lights, driving carelessly, speeding and more, Sterling Heights police said.

Police say they’re homing in on Metro Parkway and Ryan because they’re major roads that have gotten complaints surrounding speeding and careless driving.

Susalla offered some theories on why the summer season tends to align with more dangerous driving habits.

“Usually, the speeds do pick up in the summer,” he said. “I do not know the scientific reasons, but I guess the nicer weather brings out the nicer cars. It also allows for faster speeds,” because there’s no snow.

“Slow Your Roll” comes as Michigan State Police statistics reveal that almost 100 more people died in 2020 due to traffic crashes compared to 2019. Sterling Heights Police Chief Dale Dwojakowski explained the campaign’s broader connection to road safety.

“Although Ryan Road and Metropolitan Parkway were chosen for this summer’s traffic enforcement detail, our 17-member Traffic Safety Bureau works every day to address traffic complaints and ensure Sterling Heights remains one of the safest communities in the nation,” Dwojakowski added in a statement.

“And while we will have increased enforcement on the dedicated dates, all our officers will be paying close attention to these areas of our City for the entire summer.”

According to an online traffic volume map from the Southeast Michigan Council of Governments, the average annual daily traffic, or AADT, for Metropolitan Parkway in Sterling Heights ranges, according to segment, between 44,600 and 58,700 for traffic in both directions combined. Ryan Road, between 14 Mile and 18 Mile, varied in AADT between 25,300 and 31,300, depending on the segment.

The AADT map data for those roads within the listed boundaries varied in recency from 2011 to 2019, with a majority being taken in 2015, according to the map.

Learn more about Sterling Heights by visiting Call the Police Department at (586) 446-2800.

See SEMCOG’s traffic data by visiting