There will soon be more troopers on Mississippi highways. That's because a class of 43 new recruits graduated Thursday.
Of that number, at least three are expected to work in the East Mississippi District, based in Meridian, which covers nine counties.
With some local troopers helping out in hurricane damaged areas and others on military deployment, officials say the new recruits are needed now more than ever.
"Thirty years ago we probably had 45 men working more hours. At this point and time, we've probably got close to 25 men," said Sgt. Ronnie Carter of Troop H. "We've had an increase in traffic, an increase in highways and we just haven't had an increase in manpower."
Carter says the trooper shortage is a statewide problem. He says this is mainly because of a lack of funding for classes for recruits.