Campbell County, VA- The Campbell County Sheriff's Office is on the go all the time which is why they are trying a hybrid car to save the county some money.
The Campbell County Sheriff's Office accumulates high mileage as they respond to calls across this 511 square mile county. That's why something as simple as saving on gas could be huge for them. So they just bought a hybrid Ford Fusion. They say having a car like this could keep them from filling their tanks once a day to once a week.
"I think the times comes to definitely take advantage of technology and try some of these cars and see how they work," said Sheriff Steve Hutcherson.
The car is going to Darrell Dowdy, he's a Domestic Violence Investigator for Campbell County. He says he had to fill-up his previous car sometimes once a day depending on where he was going.
"As far as economy I think it'll be a great step forward for the county, we drive a considerable amount of miles," said Dowdy.
Dowdy alone normally drives 40 to 120 miles a day.
"I'm just one officer. When you've got multiple officers doing the same thing each day it ends up quite a bit in gas, tires, and oil over a period of time," said Dowdy.
That's why it's important for officers like Dowdy to have a hybrid car. Like other investigators, he drives long distances to do things like interrogate witnesses, or check out crime-scenes.
"So they're not doing pursuit driving, they're not getting out here on rough roads answering complaints, looking for lost people or those types of things. They're basically just used for transportation from point A to point B," said Sheriff Hutcherson.
Civil Process Servers also travel many miles during the day. If this hybrid works out, they're next in line to get one. The Sheriff says he can't control how many miles they have to drive, but he thinks going hybrid will help deal with travel costs.
"I think we're gonna save quite a bit of money with it," said Sheriff Hutcherson.
The Sheriff says with the economy, the amount of money they get from the state has decreased each year -- so they're working to save taxpayers some money. Each car should save around 15 hundred dollars a year!
"I hope we provide the best service possible, save taxpayers money at the same time and not have to you know cut positions or cut services in order to save money," said Hutcherson.
The Sheriff says their budget is up for renewal in July and they need to replace two more investigators' cars. He says if they like how this one works he hopes those two will be hybrids. The Sheriff says he wouldn't be surprised if the entire fleet of cars, even the patrol cars, is replaced with hybrids in the next ten years.