BEND, OR -- School is out and visitors are pouring into Central Oregon. Deschutes County Sheriff Shane Nelson says with more people on the road, it’s even more important that drivers remain focused. "When we get tourist traffic coming in, there’s even more congestion. Our cars are out there doing proactive patrol; it is a little bit harder to move around but we will still be out there enforcing all of the traffic laws. And, of course, some of the busy times we have overtime shifts; during Sisters Rodeo, we had DUII cars that were out." He tells KBND News, "We have a lot of people coming to recreate here, and of course all of us that live here are also on the road going to recreate. The number one thing I can say is to please just focus on your driving. There’s any number of things inside your car, including your cell phone, that try and draw your attention away."
Search and Rescue volunteers are also preparing for more calls, "We have one of the busiest search and rescue units in the state and we are getting geared up for our summer season," says Sheriff Nelson. "They just had a great training over the last weekend. I stopped by Search and Rescue the other day – I’m so thankful to those volunteers that go and donate their time. They bring a lot of skills and use a lot of high-tech equipment when they’re out there doing those rescues." He adds, "We have technically skilled climbing teams, swift-water rescue, ATV, we have a K9 unit; and so all of these special skills they bring to the table, we are prepared for any type of activity on the High Desert and that’s really something that I’m very proud of. There are a lot of different climates throughout the year around here in Central Oregon and we can respond to all them with great volunteers."
To hear our full conversation with Sheriff Shane Nelson, visit our podcast page