As We See It

Trucks don’t need no stinkin’ badges!

Illustration: Ryan Olbrysh

Forty-three: Fatal accidents involving cars and big rigs in Nevada (2006).

Seventy-nine: Percentage of Nevadans who agree that ticketing drivers of both cars and trucks would make things safer.

So why does the Highway Patrol’s “badge on board” program—in which troopers ride shotgun in selected 18-wheelers and cite drivers who stay in blind spots, don’t allow for wide turns, etc.—focus on the cars?

I would need a freakish number of fingers to count the close calls I’ve had with semis. To be honest, most were the truckers’ fault. Me, I’m just trying to get to work, beetling along in my little Focus. Trucks, though—don’t get me going. Changing lanes as if size equaled right of way? Check. Driving three abreast, going 20 mph below the speed limit? Check. Suddenly swerving in front of me because the truck ahead of this one is going too slow and this guy would rather force me to mash my brakes than gear down himself? Every goddamn day.

So where are the tickets for that crap? (Don’t need more fingers than I have to count the rigs I’ve seen pulled over.) Why don’t we get badges on board so NHP can see this thing from ground level? Yes, semis lugging three trailers at a snail’s pace are an inescapable part of life in a city. I get that. I just can’t muster much sympathy for their plight.

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Scott Dickensheets

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