When you ask the average citizen what they think a state highway patrol officer does during his shift, they’re likely to tell you that the officer sits along a highway, points a radar gun at oncoming traffic, and then chases down speeders to write tickets.
While yes, state troopers do enforce traffic laws and give out tickets to those who break the law, that’s just a small part of what they do every day.
One of the essential things state highway patrol officers do is manage and investigate traffic accidents, especially if the accidents occur on multiple-lane thoroughfares. State officers are likely to be the ones to direct traffic away from the scene of the incident, and state investigators are usually the most experienced when it comes to determining the actions that led to the accident.
State officers have been known to transport victims with non-life-threatening injuries to hospitals in the event that there are not enough ambulances are available, or to transport home those victims of the crash whose vehicles have been disabled and who have no other way to return to their homes.
State patrol officers also spend much of their time helping motorists who have a flat tire or other problem with their cars. By stopping and putting the patrol car with flashing lights behind the disabled vehicle, they make the situation safer for everyone involved by making drivers of oncoming vehicles aware of a problem ahead. The troopers can help the drivers contact a tow truck or other services that can help them get the disabled vehicle away from the flow of traffic.
Many times, especially in more rural situations, the state trooper is the first person to arrive on the scene of any reported crime. Troopers go through extensive training to be able to identify the type of situation they are facing upon arriving at a reported crime scene. The troopers usually are the ones who provide vital intel to later-arriving first responders or police about what they will face when they arrive on the scene.
In many of those cases, the state troopers also handle the actual investigation of the crime. Most state police departments have troopers who specialize in crime scene investigations, evidence collection, and other key parts of the investigative process. Many of […]
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