Every cop knows that death rides with him on every patrol, emerging out of nowhere when a shift may seem routine.
For one Idaho state trooper, that moment almost came on Wednesday along Interstate 84 near the town of Meridian, according to the Idaho Stateman.
Dashcam video of the incident shows that in less time than it takes to read this sentence, the trooper and a motorist he was helping on the shoulder of the highway had to jump over a concrete median as a pickup truck came barreling toward them.
Idaho State Trooper injured while helping man on the freeway.
Notice how quickly the trooper jumped in front of the man. pic.twitter.com/2TuCTIYGdE
— Yoshi The Patriot (@rinohuntah) December 3, 2021
According to an Idaho State Police news release, the trooper had been helping a motorist with a flat tire.
The officer was wearing a yellow safety vest. His patrol car had its emergency lights on and was parked behind the Toyota with the flat tire.
What the dashcam video does not show was described in the release.
“One vehicle began to slow prior to passing the patrol car. That vehicle was hit by another, causing a chain reaction of four eastbound vehicles,” the release said.
But that was not all.
“Two involved pickups were pushed left, sideswiping the parked patrol car and hitting the rear of the Toyota.”
The trooper was taken to a hospital with injuries sustained when he vaulted the concrete barrier, but was sent home with what the release called “minor injuries.”
The owner of the wrecked Toyota was also injured leaping out of the truck’s way, but was not taken to a hospital.
The wreckage from the chain reaction crash blocked the highway for about 90 minutes.
“Traffic stops are very high risk. They’re necessary to keep people safe on the road and to help those stranded, but we need motorists’ help so we can all go home at night,” Idaho State Police Sgt. Brandalyn Crapo said.
“Slowing down and moving over for emergency vehicles and workers isn’t just a courtesy, it’s the law. Drivers need to be alert to emergency lights and vehicles and always alert to what’s happening around them. That keeps all of us safe.”
Idaho law requires drivers to slow down, change lanes or both when passing police and other emergency vehicles that are stopped on the roadway.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.