Operation Yellow Jacket Stings Highway Speeders

Posted January 30, 2007

— North Carolina Highway Patrol troopers were writing tickets practically every minute Tuesday afternoon as part of an effort to crack down on speeding through highway construction zones.

Troopers taking part in Operation Yellow Jacket set up on U.S. Highway 1/64 in Cary and on Interstate 40 near U.S. Highway 70 along the Wake-Johnston county line. They used hand-held radar to identify speeders and motorcycles and unmarked and marked cruisers to chase after and cite offenders.

In their first 35 minutes on U.S. 1/64, troopers said they issued 34 tickets. Most of those cited were driving between 70 and 80 mph through the 55 mph zone, although one driver was ticketed for driving 96 mph along the stretch of highway.

"It's clearly marked that it's a work zone, but we still get ridiculously high speeds out here," Trooper Curtis Manning said. "Everybody's in a hurry nowadays, and I guess it's more important to get home quickly than to get home safely. I really don't understand the speeds."

Operation Yellow Jacket refers to the brightly colored state Department of Transportation crews who often have to work around speeding drivers. The U.S. 1/64 widening project is mostly finished, but there are still daily lane closures.

"I think it's a good idea. It keeps the construction workers who are working out there safe," driver Scott Baker said. "I'd hate it if I was on the receiving end of a ticket, but I can understand all this."

A ticket for speeding though a construction zone carries a $250 fine and $110 in court costs.

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  • The Chosen One Feb 1, 2007

    I for one Agree with the majority of the individuals here.. If you dont want a ticket.. DONT SPEED .. period..
    What i do have a problem with is State troopers as well as Cary Police Profiling .. I went from Willow Spring to CARY and had a state trooper follow me until i got to my job here in Cary..
    granted i do have a sports car and it is a bit flashy but to be followed for 35 min. Thats pretty bad.. ALSO had Cary police follow me for about 15 min as well.
    Since i dont want any more tickets I always obey the speed limit Even with a sports car.

    TO all police .. Keep up the great work, slow them down and PLEASE STOP FOLLOWING ME...


  • diwanicki Jan 31, 2007

    Want to hear a good one? This guy was driving a fancy sports car and I guess we all weren't going fast enough for him he decided he was going to use the shoulder to go around all of us, well he got pulled over. The idiot did this at a place where everyone know the cops sit. If you are in that much of a hurry, buy a plane ticket. We were all laughing at him. Wonder if that guy learned his lesson. That was a few years ago on I95 somewhere.

  • ltbarkley Jan 31, 2007

    Builder276 - If people come quickly up behind you, its not that hard to simply move over. Know those signs that say "Slower traffic keep right?" They are just a suggestion, but please follow it. It allows traffic to flow better. This is assuming there is more than one lane to the road, if not, then yes, they can just deal with it. I am the same way, 5-7 mph over. If there is a lane to the left, the faster traffic should be there, not tailgating me in the far right.

    And to whomever said that NC should have Tailgating laws - they do. Believe me I know, I have been cited for Aggressive Driving (right after the law came out, bad day, I slammed on the brakes and the tailgater hit me). I got cited for Aggressive Driving, he ALSO got cited for aggressive driving/Following too closely. That charge is JUST as serious as getting a DWI. If you ever get cited for it, GET A LAWYER. It carries a maximum charge of JAILTIME. I learned my lesson the hard way, DON'T BRAKE FOR TAILGATERS.

  • MSgt J Jan 31, 2007

    There is no such thing as a quota for tickets. I used to think they had quotas too, but they don't. The fact of the matter is that way too many people are killed each year in thesse construction areas due to people driving too fast or too reckless. It's simple. If the speed limit is 55 then do 55. It doesn't matter what time of day it is or if workers are present or not. I'm tired of seeing people drive like idiots. Think about the cost that all of us suffer from increased insurance premiums because people don't obey traffic laws.

  • diwanicki Jan 31, 2007

    Yes, you can get a ticket for going to slow(under the speed limit) If you aredriving that way for a valid reason(getting of at next exit do to tire problesm, gas or car trouble) put your 4ways on. Its not that hard to push a button. And why is it so hard for people to put on their turn signal? Are you people just to lazy? When I can't see the front of your car, you are to close to me and need to back off. You may be in a hurry to die, but I am not.

  • builder276 Jan 31, 2007

    Trhe only problem I have with the police hiding to catch speeders is when they park on the sidewalk on Millbrook. The sidewalks are for walking. Some day they are going to run over a child doing that. Will it be the childs fault. Sounds like a lawsuit in the making.

  • Munchie Jan 31, 2007

    It's quota time! I have no problem with the police giving tickets in work zones...but why always at the end of the month. kevin...the hill thing happened to me on Millbrook. And I forgot who suggested driving on cruise control..I'm not using cruise control on side streets that's retarded.

  • LTL Jan 31, 2007

    Where are the "workers "in the work zone.I dont mind the enforcement but at sometimes there is not a person working w...Do I smell a cash cow here?

  • kstor33 Jan 31, 2007

    Remember folks...these are "speed limits" NOT "speed suggestions"!

  • susanhustace Jan 31, 2007

    Only 34 tickets issued? Traffic cops should definitely stake out the NASCAR speedway along Lewey Drive right off Highway 55 through Brookstone Subdivision in Cary during rush hours. It's posted 25 mph but cars including minivans with moms reach highway speeds and school buses are constantly picking up and dropping off along this road. Go figure.