by Mindy Aguon
Guam - In light of the recent traffic fatalities and the traffic delays caused by the crashes, Acting Governor Ray Tenorio met with members of the Guam Police Department, the Mayors Council, the Department of Public Works and other stakeholders this afternoon to develop solutions to deter crashes and traffic congestion.
Police Chief Fred Bordallo announced that GPD will be implementing Operation Blue Fire to increase police presence on the streets to deter motorists from speeding and violating the rules of the road. But concerns were raised that patrol officers are already undermanned and are hardly able to respond to the daily emergency calls they receive.
Acting Police Commander Major Ric Leon Guerrero said, "We're not gonna touch patrol because they are inundated with calls. We are going to use SOD-SWAT, Special Divisions. We've also approached Captain Steve Ignacio, who oversees the CAPE and Police Reserve. The Police Reserve Program, we still got some bumps but Captain Steve is working on that before we can send them out," he said.
But even with additional personnel, Leon Guerrero noted that the agency also needs patrol cars. Port Police have also agreed to provide assistance by patrolling the stretch of road between the Agat Marina to the Agana Marina while Airport Police officers will be more visible in the Tiyan area. Several precincts have also received federal grant money to implement speed traps along various thoroughfares.
Public Works Director Joanne Brown meanwhile says her agency is doing the best it can to ease traffic congestion at the construction sites but she feels the bigger picture is the growing frustration and impatience of motorists. "Maybe there's a few days in the next few weeks that we have a very visible presence during the rush hour," she speculated, "so maybe people will be a little more conscientious because I'm not gonna be speeding when I see a police officer go by."