It doesn't need to be a so-called Routine Traffic Stop

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Thread: It doesn't need to be a so-called Routine Traffic Stop

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    Post It doesn't need to be a so-called Routine Traffic Stop

    All you guys in harm's way, take care and be lucky.

    Trooper jumps to avoid truck on I-81 - Roanoke.com

    Trooper jumps to avoid truck on I-81
    The trooper was helped up the embankment by several motorists, including the trucker.
    By Jeff Sturgeon
    381-1661

    A Virginia State Police trooper who jumped off an embankment to avoid an out-of-control tractor-trailer was recovering at home Tuesday, two days after police charged the trucker who nearly struck the trooper with reckless driving on Interstate 81.

    Trooper Kenneth Kozar, who has 21 years with the state police, was left "bruised up" after an attempt to remove a tire shred from the interstate in Southwest Virginia, Sgt. Paul Watts said.

    "It was a very close call," Watts said.

    A charge is pending against Enrique Gonzalez, 37, of California, police said. His hometown was not released.

    I-81 is generating official concern about truck-related wrecks and their potential to end lives.

    Wrecks involving commercial motor vehicles killed 12 people on I-81 in Virginia last year, more than on any other interstate, according to the state Department of Motor Vehicles, which is working with state police and other agencies to tighten enforcement of equipment and other regulations.

    It all began about 7 p.m. Sunday on northbound I-81 when Kozar stopped to retrieve a tire shred a short distance before the Ironto rest stop. Troopers do this kind of thing from time to time, even though it is not specifically in their job description, Watts said.

    It is done with blue lights flashing on the police car.

    Normally, "you park, you run out," Watts said. "Thirty seconds later, you're back on the shoulder with the debris in your hand ready to leave."

    Kozar was on foot in the left northbound lane when he glanced at approaching northbound traffic and saw a big rig whose driver appeared to be losing control, police said.

    Kozar ran off the highway, crossed the shoulder, jumped over the guardrail and tumbled downhill, Watts said. Fearing the truck may tumble off the interstate, too, he tumbled all the way to the bottom, where he came to rest in a smelly, overgrown quagmire about 2 feet deep with water, Watts said.

    The truck's driver, who was hauling melons and red peppers, told police that he pulled to the left lane when he saw traffic ahead of him slowing down, Watts said.

    His plan was to slow down there, but he couldn't.

    The trucker then veered across the right lane and onto the outside shoulder and braked when he saw the trooper's parked vehicle, Watts said. His truck hit the guardrail, fell to one side and slid into the rear of the police car, Watts said.

    By then, Kozar had jumped.

    Several motorists, including the trucker, went down the embankment to Kozar and helped bring him up. Everybody got soaked and muddy.

    "I'm immensely grateful," Watts said. "I'm very thankful that the public thought enough of the trooper to go down and help him."

    Watts, asked if the wreck was preventable, said he did not know. All the other motorists slowed and kept their vehicles under control, Watts said, while the trucker "did not see what everybody else was seeing."

    "The lesson to be learned is, as in most crashes, driver inattention is a causative factor," Watts said.

    "Driver inattention puts people in bad situations that sometimes are very difficult to recover from."

    It took about 12 hours to fully reopen the road. On Tuesday, the guardrail remained flattened, and peppers and melons littered the area.
    FWIIW & totally unimportant -- According to the produce manager, it was more than just "peppers and melons" and it was why my local Kroger was low on produce when I shopped Tuesday, senior discount day. He said it was a Kroger Truck headed to that store. Of course the produce manager could have been blowing smoke.
    Last edited by DaveH; June 23rd, 2010 at 12:43 PM. Reason: grammar & added the "Of course...."
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    You see it all day long on the road, people not paying attention. Texting, applying make-up, talking, reading books/newspapers, or just daydreaming cause, or contribute to, virtually every "accident". Why people don't get it, I will never understand.

    My favorite to this day is the 20 something guy driving down the interstate with one hand on the wheel and (get this) BOTH feet on the dash talking on his cell phone. I cringe just thinking about him.
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    I've done it. I've hit the lights and removed large parts of tire on the road. Not too long ago we had a kid killed when he hit part of a retread on the highway and lost control of his motorcyle.

    I can imagine watching a swerving truck complete with smoking tires,the sound that comes with it and a snaking trailer coming at you.

    I'm glad the trooper lived to tell about it.
    That driver at the very least should have been at least cited for Careless and Prohibited driving.
    I would rather stand against the cannons of the wicked than against the prayers of the righteous.


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    Sounds like the trucker was either speeding or not looking far enough ahead to scan for slowing traffic
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    Quote Originally Posted by HotGuns View Post
    I've done it. I've hit the lights and removed large parts of tire on the road. Not too long ago we had a kid killed when he hit part of a retread on the highway and lost control of his motorcyle.

    I can imagine watching a swerving truck complete with smoking tires,the sound that comes with it and a snaking trailer coming at you.

    I'm glad the trooper lived to tell about it.
    That driver at the very least should have been at least cited for Careless and Prohibited driving.
    If they want him they can get him.

    Va code:

    § 46.2-816. Following too closely.

    The driver of a motor vehicle shall not follow another motor vehicle, trailer, or semitrailer more closely than is reasonable and prudent, having due regard to the speed of both vehicles and the traffic on, and conditions of, the highway at the time.

    § 46.2-852. Reckless driving; general rule.

    Irrespective of the maximum speeds permitted by law, any person who drives a vehicle on any highway recklessly or at a speed or in a manner so as to endanger the life, limb, or property of any person shall be guilty of reckless driving.

    § 46.2-853. Driving vehicle which is not under control; faulty brakes.

    A person shall be guilty of reckless driving who drives a vehicle which is not under proper control or which has inadequate or improperly adjusted brakes on any highway in the Commonwealth.

    § 46.2-861. Driving too fast for highway and traffic conditions.

    A person shall be guilty of reckless driving who exceeds a reasonable speed under the circumstances and traffic conditions existing at the time, regardless of any posted speed limit.

    § 46.2-868. Reckless driving; penalties.

    A. Every person convicted of reckless driving under the provisions of this article shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.


    § 46.2-868.1. Aggressive driving; penalties.

    A. A person is guilty of aggressive driving if (i) the person violates one or more of the following: § 46.2-802 (Drive on right side of highways), § 46.2-804 (Failure to observe lanes marked for traffic), § 46.2-816 (Following too closely), § 46.2-821 (Vehicles before entering certain highways shall stop or yield right-of-way), § 46.2-833.1 (Evasion of traffic control devices), § 46.2-838 (Passing when overtaking a vehicle), § 46.2-841 (When overtaking vehicle may pass on right), § 46.2-842 (Driver to give way to overtaking vehicle), § 46.2-842.1 (Driver to give way to certain overtaking vehicles on divided highway), § 46.2-843 (Limitations on overtaking and passing), any provision of Article 8 (§ 46.2-870 et seq.) of Chapter 8 of Title 46.2 (Speed), or § 46.2-888 (Stopping on highways); and (ii) that person is a hazard to another person or commits an offense in clause (i) with the intent to harass, intimidate, injure or obstruct another person.

    ....
    [emphasis added]
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    Veni, Vidi, Velcro

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    Works for me. It'd be a shame to find out he was an illegal from Mexico. He might have to go back.
    I would rather stand against the cannons of the wicked than against the prayers of the righteous.


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    Anybody that has occasion to work (walking) on the highways will tell you it is a very dangerous place. Hundreds of near misses for every report you read. I've almost been a speedbump a few times myself.
    "Each worker carried his sword strapped to his side." Nehemiah 4:18

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    Hundreds of near misses for every report you read. I've almost been a speedbump a few times myself.
    Thats the truth. One of our county officers got whacked by a mirror a few weeks ago. Luckily for him it collapsed and he was only bruised a bit. Could have been much worse.
    I would rather stand against the cannons of the wicked than against the prayers of the righteous.


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    Quote Originally Posted by RoadRunner71 View Post
    You see it all day long on the road, people not paying attention. Texting, applying make-up, talking, reading books/newspapers, or just daydreaming cause, or contribute to, virtually every "accident". Why people don't get it, I will never understand.

    My favorite to this day is the 20 something guy driving down the interstate with one hand on the wheel and (get this) BOTH feet on the dash talking on his cell phone. I cringe just thinking about him.
    Having driven 18-wheelers for seven years even I can’t believe some of the things I have seen going on behind the wheel. Anything from applying makeup to shaving to some things you won’t even see in a XXX film.
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    Sadly it seems that the only thing obeying the traffic laws will get you these days is "the finger", from all those people that just have to be there 10 minutes ago, and think tailgating is going to move others faster.

    Try an experiment if you dare, go to any interstate, or major highway, and drive the speed limit (or even 5-10 MPH over), see how many people you pass...
    Rick

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    Happy the Trooper lived to tell the tale! While on the Delaware State Police a fellow Trooper had stopped his patrol vehicle behind a disabled vehicle and was arranging for a tow truck when him and his vehicle was run over by a tractor trailer. The driver had fallen asleep. This happened at about 10:00 a.m. on a bright sunny day, all the lights were lit on the crusier. The tractor trailer made it all the way to the front windshield, atop the crusier. My friend was pensioned off on a disability pension, he was crushed while still inside his car. Luckily, he has recovered and the only permanent damage was to his hearing of all things. This took place on I-95 S/B just below the Delaware rest stop.
    Last edited by Hiram25; June 24th, 2010 at 08:59 AM. Reason: Location of incident.
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    It was repeatedly stressed to my academy class that the majority of LEO deaths in the line of duty were traffic-related.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RoadRunner71 View Post
    You see it all day long on the road, people not paying attention. Texting, applying make-up, talking, reading books/newspapers, or just daydreaming cause, or contribute to, virtually every "accident". Why people don't get it, I will never understand.
    Media and many LEO's keep telling people speeding is the number one cause of accidents when it's really inattention. The first time I saw inattention publicized as the #1 reason was a very small sign in a State Trooper HG about 10 yrs ago and haven't seen it publicized again since.

    I once saw a female LEO doing her hair, with both hands, passing me (doing 70) in 55 zone. Go figure.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rstickle View Post
    Sadly it seems that the only thing obeying the traffic laws will get you these days is "the finger", from all those people that just have to be there 10 minutes ago, and think tailgating is going to move others faster.

    Try an experiment if you dare, go to any interstate, or major highway, and drive the speed limit (or even 5-10 MPH over), see how many people you pass...

    Drive 5 to 10 over the speed limit, staying in the right lane, and see how many tractor trailers come up so close so close behind you that all you can see in the rear view mirror is the radiator.

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    Quote Originally Posted by celticredneck View Post
    Drive 5 to 10 over the speed limit, staying in the right lane, and see how many tractor trailers come up so close so close behind you that all you can see in the rear view mirror is the radiator.
    One of the things I have noticed is that here in Virginia is that many out-of-State drivers seem to ignore the work/construction-zone reductions. Conversely, In some States when I'm driving out-of-State everyone seems to tailgate and/or pass me in the work/construction-zones.

    FWIIW work/construction-zone limits are particularly targeted, here in Va.

    Also, FYI, another one that is heavily enforced here that out-of-Staters seem to ignore (at their peril) is:

    § 46.2-921.1. Drivers to yield right-of-way or reduce speed when approaching stationary emergency vehicles on highways; penalties.

    The driver of any motor vehicle, upon approaching a stationary emergency vehicle, as defined in § 46.2-920, that is displaying a flashing, blinking, or alternating emergency light or lights as provided in §§ 46.2-1022, 46.2-1023, and 46.2-1024, shall (i) on a highway having at least four lanes, at least two of which are intended for traffic proceeding as the approaching vehicle, proceed with caution and, if reasonable, with due regard for safety and traffic conditions, yield the right-of-way by making a lane change into a lane not adjacent to the stationary emergency vehicle or (ii) if changing lanes would be unreasonable or unsafe, proceed with due caution and maintain a safe speed for highway conditions.

    Violation of any provision of this section shall constitute a Class 1 misdemeanor. If the violation resulted in damage to property of another person, the court may, in addition, order the suspension of the driver's privilege to operate a motor vehicle for not more than one year. If the violation resulted in injury to another person, the court may, in addition to any other penalty imposed, order the suspension of the driver's privilege to operate a motor vehicle for not more than two years. If the violation resulted in the death of another person, the court may, in addition to any other penalty imposed, order the suspension of the driver's privilege to operate a motor vehicle for two years.
    I have it on good authority that the SP have instructions that if they are making a citation stop and feel endangered by a too-close-high-speed pass, they are to abandon the citation and pursue and charge violators of this section.
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    Veni, Vidi, Velcro

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