The Riverside Police Department Traffic Bureau is comprised of 39 sworn employees, including one Lieutenant Bureau Commander, three Sergeants, 16 Motor Officers and six Collision Investigators. The bureau’s investigative efforts are further supported by four Detectives and one Traffic Collision Reconstructionist.
These sworn officers are complimented by nine civilian employees, who all operate under the direction of the Field Operations Division Commander, Captain Townsend.
As a whole, the bureau specializes in the enforcement of traffic laws, both city and state, specifically related to the safety and concerns of the citizens of Riverside. These daily duties include traffic education through enforcement, traffic collision investigations, detection and arrest of intoxicated drivers and parking control. The bureau also has a Tow Coordinator who monitors private tow companies that tow for the city. The Tow Coordinator conducts hearings and authorizes the release of impounded vehicles.
Other specific collateral functions within the bureau include the department’s Major Accident Investigation Team (M.A.I.T.) and a Traffic Grants Coordinator. The Special Events Coordinator works with other departments and private special interests groups to authorize planned community events within the city requiring specific permits.
The Major Accident Investigation Team is staffed with officers, detectives and civilians with years of training and expertise. M.A.I.T. responds to investigate traffic collisions that are typically fatal or require specialized skills and equipment to capture data and collect evidence. Its members have investigated thousands of traffic collisions and have successfully prosecuted numerous felony and misdemeanor traffic collision investigations. MAIT uses advanced technology such as a Spectra Precision Focus 30 Robotic Total Station to collect data at collision scenes.
The Total Station mapping device uses infrared laser technology that is accurate to within 5mm at 1,000 feet. The precise measurements from the Total Station aid investigators in reconstructing the collision and determining the cause. MAIT investigators are used in creating detailed diagrams of officer involved shootings and major crime scenes. Several RPD MAIT Investigators serve as instructors with the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Advanced Post-Blast Investigation School, instructing officers and investigators from across the country in the mapping and documentation of large terrorist bomb blast crime scenes.
Traditionally, the Riverside Police Department has been the recipient of state grant funds to assist their public safety efforts. The Traffic Bureau currently manages two grants specific to DUI enforcement. One of the grants (AVOID the 30) includes 30 total Riverside County law enforcement agencies and funds a Grant Manager position within the Traffic Bureau.