Local News

DOT employees bring rush-hour chase live to TV

Posted August 2, 2011 3:58 p.m. EDT
Updated August 2, 2011 7:58 p.m. EDT

— A chase on Interstate 40 in Wake County unfolded live on television Monday, thanks to the camera work of two state Department of Transportation employees.

Tim Fluornoy and Levi Boykin kept the action in focus from inside the DOT's Triangle Traffic Management Center in Raleigh.

It all started when Flournoy heard something unusual from the state Highway Patrol on his radio scanner.

"I overheard a 10-43, which is a chase," Flournoy said.

Joysticks in hand, he and Boykin followed the chase as Martin Chavious, 26, of Durham, allegedly led troopers on a bobbing and weaving chase through morning rush-hour traffic.

"We kind of played leapfrog with the Highway Patrol," Boykin said. "They'd move the camera (and) we'd check the next one to have things set up and ready."

As the pursuit intensified, Flournoy became more diligent in following it because he thought it was likely to end in a wreck. Live traffic video helps troopers and DOT crews respond quickly to the scenes of wrecks or traffic backups, he said.

"Everybody was just really on the edge, ready to respond (to) anything that could have happened in that chase," Boykin added.

No one was injured in the pursuit. It ended around 8:30 a.m. near the Page Road exit near Research Triangle Park when troopers say Chavious pulled over, got out of his car and ran into a wooded area.

He was apprehended within minutes and charged with felony speeding to elude arrest, careless and reckless driving and a registration violation.

"We were amazed that nobody got hit," Boykin said.

Flournoy agreed.

"It was a scary situation for a while, but we handled it well," he said.