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Monday, November 19, 2012
OKLAHOMA CITY – A safety checkpoint in Tulsa County on Saturday netted 31 citations for driving without auto insurance. Law enforcement officers towed 11 of those uninsured vehicles. The checkpoint was the result of a partnership between the Oklahoma Insurance Department’s Anti-Fraud Unit and the Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office.
“This checkpoint was very enlightening,” Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner John D. Doak said. “One woman cited for driving under suspension said she couldn’t remember the last time she had auto insurance. It highlights a major problem on Oklahoma roadways.”
Deputies wrote 60 citations during the 4-hour checkpoint in West Tulsa. More than half were insurance-related. The Oklahoma Insurance Department’s involvement in the checkpoint was funded through the Anti-Fraud Revolving Fund, which is comprised of fines, penalties and awards from legal settlements.
“The amount of citations issued this weekend was as impressive as it was disturbing,” said Tulsa County Sheriff Stanley Glanz. “The fact that so many motorists are operating on our public roadways without insurance is an alarming trend and a quality of life issue. We, as law enforcement, must remain vigilant in enforcing traffic safety and compliance with the insurance laws.”
Several state lawmakers lauded the effort, saying the crackdown was much needed.
“Commissioner Doak’s efforts to get uninsured drivers off the road will save us all money,” said Sen. Bill Brown, R-Broken Arrow. “And, best of all he found a way to do it without spending state taxpayer funds.”
Rep. Steve Martin, R-Bartlesville, authored the legislation that allows law enforcement agencies to tow uninsured vehicles. “Uninsured motorists are an enormous problem for our state,” said Martin. “It costs every driver in higher premiums, even those drivers not involved in an accident. I, for one, am very glad to see the Insurance Commissioner doing something about the problem.”
“With up to 25% of the drivers on the road without insurance, something needs to be done,” said Rep. Dan Kirby, R-Tulsa. “Commissioner Doak found a way to step up enforcement without using Oklahoma tax dollars. This is a huge step in the right direction.”
Anti-Fraud Director Michael Copeland, Commissioner John Doak and a Tulsa County Sheriff's Deputy examine an uninsured vehicle before it is towed away.
For more information contact: Kelly Collins 405-522-0683 or Kelly.Collins@oid.ok.gov
About the Oklahoma Insurance Department
The Oklahoma Insurance Department, an agency of the State of Oklahoma, is responsible for the education and protection of the insurance-buying public and for oversight of the insurance industry in the state.