Dangerous Job - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

12/29/07 - East Texas

Dangerous Job

by Christa Lollis

As police, troopers and sheriff's deputies patrol the streets they put their lives at risk everyday. They try to prevent accidents but sometimes that's what kills them. "Statistics, I believe it's been shown that most officer deaths are related to car accidents and that's because we spend the majority of our time in a car. Not only do victims get killed by drunk drivers but so do the police officers," CPL. David Garza of Lufkin PD explains.

While drunk drivers are a part of what cause these officer fatalities, it's also people who just don't pay attention. That's why new laws have been enforced. "It's a law that was passed a few years ago that requires you to either move over one lane or slow 20 miles below the speed limit and that was passed for officer safety reasons due to the number of officers getting hit on the side of the road," Garza said. Patrolling the streets is what law enforcement officers do and it makes them part of the statistics. "When you're out there the possibility of you getting hit by a drunk sitting on the side of the road is high so you want to keep an eye on traffic all the time," he told KTRE.

Out of the 22 officers that died in Texas this year 11 were from vehicle accidents and it's something that no officer ever wants to hear about. Garza said, "Not only do you know the officer, you know his family, his kids and that's where it's going to impact the most because everybody else will go on with their lives but they'll have someone missing that will be missing forever." So if you're passing one of them on the side of the road, slow down, move over, and save a life.

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