Questions Posted to "Ask a Dispatcher"
Q. What does the Police department recommend a driver do when somebody is following to close? On Douglas highway it happens more often than not!
Dear Juneau Resident,
Great question! This comes up all the time. North Douglas Highway has an often broken speed limit of 45 miles per hour. Drivers who want to speed and are thwarted by (gasp) someone actually doing the speed limit may follow too closely. From a JPD enforcement standpoint new officers are often advised by the old salts that when you are working speed enforcement, that area is a ‘target rich’ environment.
JPD’s recommendation about what to do when someone is following too closely is to assume the angry mouthings you see in your rearview mirror are not something you want to hear close up. Pull over in a safe area and let the tailgating driver pass. You might be in the right legally but if no officer is watching, protect yourself, your passengers and your paint job by just letting it go.
If you notice this activity at a specific time and vehicle (s), call JPD and ask for extra patrol. Depending on calls, officers might be able to patrol out there at the requested time and watch for that vehicle.
Do NOT slam on brakes, flash your lights, or use hand gestures to communicate with the other driver. Some people have stress in their lives you couldn’t even guess and JPD has seen lots of drivers pour what is suspected to be all their frustrations from spouse, kids, money, dog, boss etc…. into a traffic incident and just go bonkers. Road rage incidents that turn physical do happen in Juneau, one just recently. JPD is unaware of any situation where one driver decided to teach another driver a lesson and had it work out well.