New Shoreham Police Chief says dept. needs more money to create traffic unit

Following 58 moped crashes on Block Island, Rhode Island State Police sent eight troopers to the island to act as a supplemental traffic unit. 
Block Island Traffic Unit Concerns

NEW SHOREHAM, R.I. (WLNE) – Block Island saw 58 moped accidents in July and August alone.

Following the spike in crashes, Rhode Island State Police sent eight troopers to the island to act as a supplemental traffic unit.

New Shoreham Police Chief Vincent Carlone said there were only three minor crashes on Block Island over the weekend and overall there was better traffic compliance with the help of State Police.

“I think it’s a true success. The challenge will be carrying it forward,” said Chief Carlone.

Carlone said having State Police help out is a short term answer to reducing the number of accidents on the island. Long term, he wants to create a traffic unit in the Police Department.

“This is where we’re lacking. The NSPD will take an ‘F’ for traffic. We don’t have anyone,” said Carlone.

State Police have offered to help out for the rest of the Summer season, and potentially into the Fall and next Summer. But once the additional troopers leave, Carlone said he does not have enough officers to pick up the slack.

“We have never had enough people here,” said Carlone.

At the New Shoreham Town Council meeting Tuesday night, Carlone spoke to council members over Zoom and said if they want to see a permanent drop in moped accidents, his department needs more funding for a traffic unit.

“If we can get this done we will mostly correct this problem,” said the Chief. “We don’t need to discuss this any further, we need to do it.”

Before council members discuss additional funding for the police department, they requested Carlone provide them with the number of calls police respond to annually, and what type of calls they are.

“The numbers will be good, because then we can use those numbers to properly fund our department,”said André Boudreau, Second Warden of the Town Council.

The newly appointed town manager is also going to begin working on creating a task force that will look into moped related safety recommendations.

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