As a part of the Field Services Division, the Secondary Road Patrol was first begun as a part of legislation bill "416". The section first came about in 1979 with the hiring of seven officers under funding from the State of Michigan. These officers were hired and trained with this funding. With funding cuts the section now has four full time officers assigned.
One of the primary duties include specialized traffic monitoring on secondary roadways within Ingham County. Other duties include public information presentations, school programs for children and young adults, specialized traffic enforcement and monitoring, traffic crash investigation, and concerted traffic crash reduction efforts with State and local jurisdictions. Officers assigned to this section often assist road and traffic authorities in special traffic pattern and speed studies.
Personnel assigned receive training in a variety of traffic related activities which are very technical in nature. Courses include Traffic Crash Investigation and Reconstruction, Traffic RADAR as well as LASER speed measurements, as well as other traffic related training. The Traffic Section participates in many special enforcement programs with other local departments. These programs are targeted at intoxicated driver detection and apprehension, special speed measurement and apprehension, and speed enforcement.
The Traffic Services Section has been the recipient of several grants to make traffic safety presentations. These have included Vince and Larry (the crash dummies) safety belt program, and puppet programs aimed at elementary school children on topics such as winter safety, traffic safety, etc. Most recently the section received a grant which allowed the department to purchase two crash test units. In one of these units observers are allowed to "ride" through a crash including the deployment of an airbag.
Since its inception, this unit, and its Traffic Safety Programs have become models for departments throughout the country.
Several of the officers within this unit are specially trained in traffic accident investigation and reconstruction. As such these officers conduct the investigations of all serious injury traffic crashes.