Washington State Patrol emphasizing "Move Over" law this week during patrols
The Washington State Patrol is cracking down on drivers who fail to move over for emergency vehicles. Troopers are conducting statewide “Slow Down, Move Over” emphasis patrols from Wednesday through Friday “to help both troopers and citizens get home safe by bringing awareness to the ‘Move Over Law.’” In the last two years, 62 patrols cars have been hit and 24 troopers injured, an average of one trooper injured every month. Under state law, drivers are required to use caution, slow down and move over or change lanes when approaching an emergency. An emergency vehicle includes police, fire, medical, tow trucks and vehicles providing roadside assistance using warning lights. The ticket for failing to obey the law is $214 and cannot be waived or reduced. Last year, more than 4,100 drivers were contacted by state troopers for “move over” violations. “The inclement weather season is about to start and is when we see a rise in the number of patrol cars hit,” Sgt. James Prouty stated.
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Michigan State Police Detective Sergeant Sarah Krebs honored as a top cop under 40
Sarah Krebs has made a name for herself. The Michigan State Police announced that the Det. Sgt. Krebs was selected by the International Association of Chiefs of Police as one of 40 law enforcement professionals from around the world, under age 40, who demonstrated leadership and exemplified commitment to law enforcement. Krebs was chosen for the association's 40 Under 40 Award for her efforts to find and identify lost and missing persons. She will be honored at the association's annual conference in Philadelphia this week. “The MSP prides itself in providing service with a purpose,” said Col. Kriste Kibbey Etue, Michigan State Police director. “(Krebs) lives our mission and is passionate about helping the families of missing persons find closure." She credited Krebs for development the Missing Persons Coordination Unit, which has led to the positive identification of more than 70 previously unidentified remains cases throughout the United States. Krebs is credited with founding “Missing in Michigan,” an annual event which brings family members and law enforcement together to help resolve missing persons cases, as well as “ID the Missing,” a DNA collection program that assists in identifying previously unidentified human remains. She is also an accomplished forensic artist whose composite sketches have led to the identification of numerous wanted persons in major cases around the state. “Many families go years without answers as to where their loved one is,” said Krebs. “Knowing I can help bring these families closure and peace of mind keeps me motivated. I view each day as another opportunity to provide relief to loved ones of the missing.” Krebs enlisted with the MSP in 2000, graduating as a member of the 119th Trooper Recruit School. Before being assigned to the missing unit in Lansing, she served at posts and task forces in the metro Detroit area.
South Carolina Highway Patrol shortens training to get troopers on road
The South Carolina Highway Patrol says it wants about 950 troopers on the roads to help keep community members and drivers safe. Currently, the division is short about 200 troopers. The shortage has led to changes in the agency’s recruitment and training policies. There are 759 troopers in the state, 37 are in training, but there are dozens more positions to fill and major changes are coming to make that happen. “More manpower. I think if you look everywhere in the state, we’re needing troopers,” says Cpl. Sonny Collins with the highway patrol. Troop five, which covers Horry, Georgetown, Marion, Florence, Darlington, Dillon, Williamsburg, and Marlboro counties currently has 132 troopers. In an effort to hire more people state-wide, Cpl. Collins says they’re changing to an immediate turnaround in their application process and cutting training hours. Prior to the changes, Cpl. Collins says a certified officer would still have to go through 12 weeks of training at the academy to become a trooper. “With the four weeks compressed for the certified officers, I feel like that’s going to be a good calling card for those already seasoned, trained officers to come to us because before, they would have to go through multiple weeks at the academy – up to twelve weeks,” explains Cpl. Collins. Now certified officers won’t have to go back to the academy, they’ll just have four weeks of advanced training, and training in their county. Uncertified officers will now spend 12 weeks at the academy and 12 weeks training with the highway patrol and the county they’ll patrol. “With the old process, it was taking so long to get people through the process and then the academy because of the weeks of training, we were only able to get classes two times a year, sometimes three,” says Cpl. Collins. “So, those numbers were just not growing as fast as we needed them to do by doing this new way. We feel like the numbers can come up much quicker and therefore reach our goal.” Cpl. Collins says because the training quality is the same, and continued education will be implemented, they’re not worried officers will be any less qualified. “We’re not lowering our standards by any means, but we’re just compressing the time that it takes to get these folks trained and on the road so we can have more visibility on our highways,” states Cpl. Collins. The South Carolina Highway Patrol has faced a shortage of troopers since the recession, Cpl. Collins says, and although they’ve advertised for the open positions on billboards, social media, and even increased pay, the division is hoping this change in training will lure new applicants to become troopers.
Virginia State Police graduates 30 new troopers
The Commonwealth graduated its 126th generation of Virginia State Troopers on Friday, October 6. The 30 new troopers received more than 1,600 hours of classroom and field instruction in more than 100 different subjects, including defensive tactics, crime scene investigation, ethics and leadership, survival Spanish, police professionalism, firearms, judicial procedures, officer survival, cultural diversity and crisis management. The members of the 126th Basic Session began their 29 weeks of academic, physical and practical training at the Academy March 23, 2017. Upon graduation, the new troopers will report to their individual duty assignments across Virginia beginning Oct. 10, 2017, for their final phase of training. Each trooper will spend an additional six weeks paired up with a Field Training Officer learning his or her new patrol area.