Salem chief: Just be careful during Cruise

SALEM – Peeling tires, excessive smoke, speeding, reckless driving, public intoxication and open containers won’t be tolerated during the Salem Super Cruise.

That’s the no tolerance warning issued by Salem Police Chief J.T. Panezott in preparation for cruisers and car lovers hitting the streets from Thursday through the weekend.

“There will be lots of police out there,” he said.

Not only will the normal shift of officers be on duty, but 10 to 14 extra officers will be working, along with auxiliary officers, the Columbiana County Sheriff’s Office and the Ohio State Highway Patrol. Salem officers will be expecting to work some overtime.

“We’re out trying to keep people safe. It all comes down to common sense,” he said.

Panezott issued a press release to welcome people to the Salem Super Cruise, to outline the no tolerance policy, remind people to expect traffic delays and tell them to have a great time. Officers will be watching for people drinking or possessing alcoholic beverages outside the designated areas.

He said everybody’s been warned about what to expect from police.

What he expects from cruisers, visitors and pedestrians is a focus on safety, noting that the Salem Super Cruise “is a family event with children and adults of all ages standing close to the cruise route to watch the cruisers.”

Not only do drivers need to take care in their travels, he said pedestrians need to be careful, too. He said they shouldn’t just walk out into traffic thinking the cars will automatically stop. They should use the crosswalks and said officers will be out there trying to help people get across the streets.

Panezott said officers will be visible and available to help in any way they’re needed.

With State Street expected to be congested, he said travelers can use the state Route 45/62 bypass to get around the west side of town and East Third Street to get through the east side of town.