A weeklong crackdown on speeding in five southern states, including Georgia, was a big success, according to state officials.

The multi-state operation took place July 17-23 in Georgia, Alabama, Florida, South Carolina and Tennessee.

Georgia Department of Transportation officials said 17 traffic deaths were reported in Georgia, a 51% decrease from the 35 fatalities over the week before and 45% less from the 31 deaths over July 3-9.

“The deaths of 17 people on our roads is nothing to celebrate,” Roger Hayes, Governor’s Office of Highway Safety Law Enforcement Services Director said. “The results from last week do support what we have been saying for years. Obeying the speed limit and staying focused on the road while driving saves lives.”

Georgia State Patrol troopers issued 8,183 warnings and 7,473 citations for traffic offenses during the week: 3,287 speeding citations, 602 seat belt citations, and took 224 drunk and impaired drivers off the road.

The Governor’s Office of Highway Safety said 3,427 speeding contacts were made where a warning or citation was issued. Local law enforcement officers also issued warnings and citations for 3,416 other traffic offenses including 364 seat belts and made 76 DUI arrests.

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Speeding remains a leading cause of fatal traffic crashes and is often associated with other factors attributed to traffic deaths including impaired driving, distracted driving and reckless driving, the agency said.