OHP troopers aren't restricted to driving 100 miles a day after Thursday's lift

Posted at 5:05 PM, Jun 02, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-02 18:05:52-04

Oklahoma Highway Patrol (OHP) troopers are not restricted to driving 100 miles a day anymore.

According to Public Information Officer Dwight Durant, this will enable troopers to do their job more efficiently by being out on the highway patrolling and not on the sidelines.

"When you drive for a living, when your main function is to patrol the main roadways and the highways, you can do 100 miles pretty quick," said Trooper Durant.

The Department of Public Safety (DPS) announced it was lifting the mileage limit on Thursday. DPS implemented the new rule in December due to budget cuts.

Trooper Durant said despite the recent lift, the agency is still facing a shortage of troopers.

"As we stand today, we're at 790. Now of those 790, 26% can walk up tomorrow, they're eligible to retire, so we figure we're losing about 20 to 30 a year," explained Trooper Durant.

One way the OHP plans to combat the shortage will be with the help from the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority (OTA).

OTA announced last month that it will fund an OHP training academy for next year, contributing $5 million.

Trooper Durant said this will help the agency hire between 30 to 40 new troopers.

The OHP is accepting applications for the academy until June 30. For more information, click here.

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