Sonoma County drivers slowing down

Either drivers in Sonoma County are getting better at obeying traffic laws or they're simply fed up with paying ever-increasing fines.

Those are just two theories about new data released by Superior Court officials that shows a whopping 30 percent decline in the number of tickets handed out in the first six months of this year.

"The price of tickets has gone up quite a bit," said CHP Officer Jon Sloat. "They are not cheap. You don't want to get one."

Between January and July, officers patrolling city streets, county highways and state roads from Petaluma to Cloverdale wrote 35,850 tickets for violations ranging from running stop signs to speeding. The previous year, they wrote 50,571 tickets over the same period.

Just what has triggered the change is anyone's guess.

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