After deadly accidents, state police increasing presence on Block Island

NEW SHOREHAM, R.I. (WLNE) —  Rhode Island State Police are adding extra patrols on Block Island, which has seen two fatal vehicle-related accidents recently.

“It was very troubling,” said Ken Lacoste of the town council. “And so this is somewhat of a reaction to that, keeping that in mind. But it’s also just wanting in general to get a handle on things again.”

New Shoreham Police Chief Vin Carlone says his small force. eeds help handling an influx of unruly behavior this summer.

“This summer was an anomaly,” he said. “Families that we’re used to having here, who are largely law-abiding, were replaced by kids who were not so law-abiding.”

Carlone says that’s particularly been the case with vehicles like mopeds.

“Young people seem to think it’s like an amusement park ride, and some of them have been drinking,” the chief said.

Starting Friday, seven State Police troopers are set up in spots around the island, focusing on traffic enforcement.

State Police Col. James Manni said even though the island was starting to get busy by the end of the day Friday, people seem to be obeying motor vehicle laws.

“They we’re doing a pretty good job of that,” he said. “I think it’s definitely a deterrent to have State Police on Block Island.”

And officials hope it changes the tone.

“We want families to be able to feel it’s a safe place to come and visit,” Lacoste said.

“Hopefully we can do this program, and get people respecting this place,” Carlone said.

Col. Manni says State Police will have a stepped-up presence on Block Island for at least the next three weeks.

Categories: News, Regional News, Rhode Island