Highway Patrol reports 5 crashes involving troopers in last month

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HELENA – The Montana Highway Patrol posted on their Facebook page early on Saturday and said five troopers were involved in crashes that were not their fault just last month.

They reported that on Friday Major Lavin’s patrol car was almost side-swiped while he was out investigating another crash.

There were luckily no major injuries, but in some cases, the troopers were in their cars when they were struck.

MHP said these crashes were all caused by people driving irresponsibly.

Adding that people should be more concerned, If not for their safety but because it’s not just those involved in the crash that will pay for the damage.

These crashes cost the taxpayers thousands of dollars since now these vehicles need to either be fixed or replaced altogether. MHP said that there are easy ways to avoid these situations.

  • Have appropriate tires.
  • Slow down. Even if you’re traveling below the speed limit, it is best to slow down in certain weather conditions.
  • Follow at a greater distance.
  • Make sure your vehicle is cleaned off, and headlights are on to avoid limited visibility.
  • Never drive under the influence.
  • Stay home if law enforcement recommends it unless it is an emergency.
  • Buckle up and slow down for emergency vehicles.

Below is the post from Montana Highway Patrol’s Facebook page.

“It’s unfortunate that we have to report that, within the last month alone, five troopers have been involved in crashes through no fault of their own. In addition to the five crashes, Major Lavin’s patrol car was nearly side-swiped yesterday while he was at the scene investigating a crash (picture below).

In each of these cases, drivers were not driving appropriately for conditions. In some cases, our troopers were in the vehicle when it was struck. Thankfully, there were no serious injuries.

When crashes like this occur, everyone should be concerned, primarily, for the safety and security of themselves and everyone that they share the roadway with. Secondarily though, these senseless and avoidable crashes cost the tax payers money as thousands of dollars are being paid to repair, or in some cases, completely replace these vehicles.

We very deliberately use the word “crash” here because the word “accident” implies an event caused unexpectedly or by chance.

Crashing in winter conditions or sliding off the road is not an unexpected outcome if:

1. you’re driving too fast. Yes, driving the speed limit can be too fast for certain weather conditions.

2. your tires are bald or the tread is worn past legal limits.

3. you’re following too closely

4. you’re voluntarily taking the risk and driving in extreme weather conditions that emergency personnel have warned you to avoid. (Not talking about people who find themselves caught in a sudden storm or emergency situations).

5. You drive impaired. Ever. At any time.

What you can do to be the change:

1. Slow down!

2. Keep your vehicle street legal and in good condition

3. Increase your following distance

4. Turn on your headlights in inclement weather

5. Stay home if the roads are terrible and you don’t need to drive.

6. Slow down and move over for emergency vehicles (or any vehicle on the side of the road, really).

7. Buckle up!

When we all begin to take responsibility for the enormous privilege of operating a motor vehicle and hold ourselves and others to higher standards, change is possible.


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