Seal of Dane County County of Dane
Dane County Sheriff's Office

Beltline Traffic Stops

September 28, 2023
Elise Schaffer, PIO, (608) 284-6142
Sheriff's Office

We hear the concerns from motorists who travel the Beltline daily, “there needs to be more speeding enforcement”. The reality is, traffic enforcement on the Beltline is difficult and sometimes dangerous.

On Wednesday morning (9/27), a Dane County Deputy attempted to make a traffic stop on a speeding motorist in the westbound flex lane between John Nolan Drive and W. Broadway. The driver initially did not respond to the flashing lights behind him. Once the deputy initiated his sirens, the driver came to a complete stop in the open flex lane; an action that could have had disastrous consequences.

The Dane County Sheriff’s Office would like to remind drivers of the law [346.19(1)] which requires vehicles to always pull to the right curb/shoulder and stop when approached by an emergency vehicle with lights and sirens activated.

If a driver sees an emergency vehicle behind them, and traffic is too heavy in the lanes to their right to immediately move right, the preferred and legal action is that the motorist reduce their speed, turn on their turn signal to the right, and move to the right shoulder as soon as safe and practical to do so. Stopping on the left is always unsafe and illegal. Stopping on the left is even more of a safety concern in areas such as the flex lane where there is no shoulder and vehicles stopped on a high-speed roadway in a lane of traffic could result in fatal consequences. 

The Dane County Sheriff’s Office, along with our law enforcement partners who share jurisdiction of the Beltline, will continue to do our best to address traffic concerns on the Beltline; but we ask that drivers do their part, obey the traffic laws, and consider the safety of others on the road.