Local News

DMV Patrolling For Safety Over The Long Haul

Posted May 18, 1999

— No matter where you travel on our roads, chances are there is a big rig nearby. Now the state is making a push to put the brakes on dangerous driving.

Seventy thousand pounds of steel whizzing down the highway can create a potentially deadly situation. Officers were on the road Wednesday to keep the worst from happening.

"You can see this truck coming up behind us. We're running 60 right now. If I were to jam on my brakes, he'd have a hard time stopping," demonstrates DMV Officer Chuck Joyner.

Joyner is one of 20 law enforcement officers involved in a speed trap on the beltline and I-40. This area in Wake County has the second highest commercial vehicle crash rate in the state, more than 7,000 in 1997.

Officers are not only looking for unsafe drivers, they are also pulling over unsafe vehicles, including one that had bark flying off it.

Authorities say just stopping a driver once can make a difference in the long haul. "Once they make a habit of committing violations without getting caught then it becomes a repeat offense," Joyner says.

TheDivision of Motor Vehicleswill conduct more of these operations this summer, since it is the time of year when the most trucks are on the road.

Authorities say not all truck drivers are bad drivers; in fact, they are involved in fewer accidents than passenger cars. But when theyareinvolved in accidents, the outcome can be much more severe.

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