ONWASA to start community watch program


JACKSONVILLE, Onslow County - The Onslow Water and Sewer Authority is starting its own community watch program.

The CEO of the agency, Jeff Hudson, came up with the idea. He said his employee drive about a million miles each year while checking and servicing meters in Onslow County.

Last month, several ONWASA employees received training from an Onslow County Sheriff's Office deputy on how to spot suspicious activity. The hope is that employees will be able to report any suspicious activity to the sheriff's office to reduce crime.

"I don't know that the crime here in Onslow County is worse than anywhere else in America, but if you have a resource and can bring it to bear to make your community safer, then that's what we should all be about," Hudson said.

Sheriff Hans Miller said his office has about eight deputies on patrol at any given time. ONWASA has about 15-20 employees out each day.

"We appreciate ONWASA jumping on board because this is not vigilantism by a long shot, it is basically good citizenship," Miller said.

ONWASA services about 50,000 meters throughout the county each month. All of the agencies' trucks will have a community watch sticker on them. Hudson said the program will not cost ONWASA any additional money.

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