Traffic

State Highway Patrol Changes Look On Roads

Posted July 21, 2004

— The North Carolina Highway Patrol is changing its look. That new look could catch you by surprise out on the highway.

Twenty black Dodge Durangos are headed for a highway near you. The vehicles can tow and take a chase off-road into the woods. In addition, 150 Chevrolet Impalas are on order, and more are on the way. Officials said the vehicles could eventually replace the old Crown Victoria cruisers.

"The Crown Victoria has such a notoriety, such a reputation in police service that every time you see one, you think it's a police car. The Durango, on the other hand, you're thinking no, soccer mom," said Lt. Jerry Mumford, of the state Highway Patrol.

Motorists have mixed opinions about the state Highway Patrol's new vehicles.

"That does bother me. I'm used to seeing the Ford Crown Victoria and not a Durango or an Impala. I would prefer they do stay to the Crown Vic," driver Silas Christian said.

"I think they should have what they need to get the job done," driver Cornelia Weathers said.

The old standard Crown Victorias cost about $21,000. The Impalas cost about the same. The Durangos cost $22,000.

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