In slow-as-molasses traffic with the sun beating through the windshield, a car’s air conditioning can only do so much to cool off drivers – and their tempers – as they wonder if they’ll get home from work before nightfall.
That’s why Morrisville’s new police chief, Patrice Andrews, has announced a cooling-off campaign called “Chill Morrisville” to address the road rage and aggressive driving that can result from the hours Morrisville drivers spend in traffic each week. Residents often complain that it can take upwards of 40 minutes to travel a few miles through town at the worst of times – that’s equivalent to a comfortable walking speed.
Andrews said one of her officers, Sgt. E.J. Hanks, came up with the idea. Reckless driving 911 calls often conclude with the department explaining that without a patrol car in the area to observe the behavior, little action can be taken. Andrews said this program will allow the police department to at least inform drivers that they’ve been reported, which could help them calm down next time they’re in traffic.
“Oftentimes people are just trying to get to work,” Andrews said. “If they realize someone did see them and report them, maybe next time they’ll remember they could be seen again.”
The police department asks concerned drivers to record the offending vehicle’s license plate number and to be prepared to describe the vehicle and its driver, if possible. Drivers also should note the time and location of the offense, the post suggests, as well as what direction the vehicle is headed.
Owners of vehicles successfully identified by a report will receive a warning letter from the police.
“There may be someone that is not willing to wait, drives recklessly, and endangers the rest of us,” the post reads. “These aggressive drivers break several traffic offenses in an effort to get to their destination at the risk of crashing or being stopped by the police. They really need to just ‘chill’ out and be patient like the rest of us sitting in traffic.”
Gargan: 919-460-2604; @hgargan