I was riding from the south end South City by way of the freeway cruising at about 70 mph. It's amusing how people give you plenty of room as I can see all of the traffic behind which won't pass a motor cop on the freeway, especially since the typical traffic travels at around 75 mph or faster (hey remember this is California).
I know some drivers behind me are chomping at the bit and wondering when the hell am I going to take an exit off of the freeway so they can drive their usual 75+ mph. I figure there is always one in every group. I bump my speed up to 75 mph to see if there are any "takers" who want to keep up.
Initially the traffic became smaller in my rearview mirrors and then I feel a nibble..... Fish On! I see an SUV leaving the group of cars behind me. When I drive upon the white painted diamond (carpool lane) in the #1 lane or far left lane I begin to count (thinking about that All State Insurance commercial for the 3 second rule).
I get to the count of three when I see the SUV in my rearview mirror drive across the diamond. I repeat this for a couple of more diamonds and see that the SUV is keeping pace with me as I twist the throttle a little more and bump it up to 80 mph.
Sure enough, the SUV is keeping 3 seconds behind me. So I let off the throttle and move over to the lane to my right so the SUV can pass. I slowed down to 65 mph as the SUV matched my speed. After I slowed to 55 mph the SUV finally passes me. I pull behind it and turn on the pretty red and blue flashing lights.
After stopping the car I asked the driver if she knew why I stopped her. She was honest and replied "for speeding". She was honest enough to even admit that she was going 80 mph. I asked her if she knew she was following a police motorcycle. She said she thought so but wasn't sure.
Unlucky for her that I had taken off my jacket which has the word POLICE emblazoned on the back just before jumping on the freeway.
Because of her honesty I cited her for 75 mph in a posted 65 mph zone instead of the 80 mph she had been keeping pace with me.
Saturday, February 6, 2010
I rode over to our local tow yard to inspect a vehicle involved in a crash I was investigating. I noticed numerous patrol cars from local agencies (including South City). I realized that the K9 officers were doing training.
I bumped into one of the K9 handlers, Semper Fi Mac. Now Mac and I had been beat partners many years ago on the graveyard shift. Our entire weekend graveyard shift were a bunch of clowns, always playing pranks on one another. Those were some really good, fun times.
I asked Mac if he had been staying out of trouble. The look on his face told me otherwise. He was telling me that weeks ago when we were experiencing some very very cold nights, actually freezing nights he was bored. Well Mac's idle mind had the great idea of watering down a couple of patrol cars.
He was at the station finishing up reports from the weekend and every fifteen minutes he'd walk out into the parking lot and hose down the two patrol cars. He was laughing as he was telling me this story that the ice had built up so much on the two patrol cars that the small gap where the roof and car door meet was totally filled in.
He told me you could run your hand over where the gap was and you wouldn't be able to feel anything discerning where the roof and car door met.
Yeah, he was sure proud of himself. I got to laughing so hard as he was telling me this story that I thought I might have broken a rib. He was very descriptive about the small icicles hanging from the patrol car's emergency light bar, spotlights and wheel wells.
Since water doesn't instantly freeze, the water on the ground eventually froze. When the dayshift officers arrived to begin their day, they noticed the ice on the parking lot.
Well the city public works people had to come out and put salt on the frozen part of the parking lot. It took one of the officer's 30 minutes to eventually get the door open which didn't include the time spent trying to get a key into a frozen car door lock.
Mac paid though, during the time it took the officers to get into their patrol cars and de-ice them, Mac was held over from his graveyard shift for any possible calls for service until all was well with the icelcars.