A 19 year-old teen was shot and killed in Arlington after he got into a lane change dispute on I-20 in June. Nobody has been arrested in this gut-wrenching homicide.
At least the death of young Dylan Spaid inspired Arlington police to take action and police began cracking down on overly aggressive drivers. As an Arlington sergeant noted, there are a lot of angry people on the road. This new program is stopping those crazed drivers before they hurt anyone.
Undercover patrol officers constantly scan highways for aggressive motorists during sting operations. The officers look for such typical angry behavior as tailgating, cutting off other drivers, passing on the shoulder, weaving in and out of lanes, making obscene gestures and excessive speeding.
A WFAA reporter who rode along with unmarked officers saw a driver who was clocked going an unbelievable 102 mph. A crash at that speed would likely kill the driver and innocent people he ran into. This is an example of the type of conduct the sting operation is targeting.
Arlington officers aren’t messing around. So far, they’ve issued citations to more than 1,000 drivers and arrested 15 aggressive drivers.
Not only were numerous road rage injuries likely averted, but Arlington is getting a reputation for a place where drivers need to be on their best behavior.
We could use this high level of enforcement in all North Texas cities.
Just last month, a man shot a woman to death in South Dallas after their cars collided. An angry man was caught on video pointing a gun at a woman on I-35 in Lancaster in August. In July in Fort Worth, a man threw a fistful of metal sockets at another driver who attempted to get his license plate to report his dangerous trailer hookup.
I could fill pages listing frightening confrontations motorists have had with irate drivers in the area.
Dallas-Fort Worth is an incubator for road rage incidents. Unbearably hot summer days, a high rate of gun ownership and some of the worst traffic in the country combine into irritation that can escalate into violence.
Unsurprisingly Texas has a high incidence of road rage. But that doesn’t mean we have to accept it. As we’ve seen, enforcement can make a difference.
The quick response of the Arlington police department is worth noting. Dylan was killed on June 25 and Arlington initiated its successful road rage sting operations within two weeks.
Dallas, Fort Worth, and other cities in North Texas could quickly introduce similar programs to protect motorists on our cities’ violent roadways. I urge them to do so before another person is needlessly injured or killed.
If you have been a victim of road rage, I can help you recover damages and hold the irate driver accountable. Even if, as unfortunately often happens, the angry driver gets away, I pursue other available means of getting you the compensation you deserve.