I recently stumbled across a letter to the editor of the Pocono Record, and shockingly, the letter was published on the site. The letter’s writer, Emilio Paletta, addresses his traffic, speeding and safety concerns. Paletta begins his letter by describing Pennsylvania’s traffic citation structure and calls fines being doubled in work zones “a joke.”
Then he turns his wrath on truck drivers.
Here’s an excerpt of the letter:
Until the state of Pennsylvania passes stringent laws regarding truck traffic and the state police begin enforcing them, innocent drivers will continue to be used for target practice by law-breaking truck drivers.
I would like to see the fines raised significantly on all parties involved — the operator, owner/operator and or the company — when a truck driver exceeds the posted speed limit. I suggest somewhere in the range of $1,000 for a first offense, such as speeding or tailgating, and $2,000 for a second offense. Thereafter, take away their privilege to operate in Pennsylvania. Then and only then, when you hit them in the pocketbook will you see how quickly they adhere to the law.
With lesser fines, but still higher than they currently are, this also should apply to automobile drivers who excessively speed, tailgate, change lanes without using their directional signals, or do not put their headlights on during inclement weather or at dusk.
Paletta ends his letter by calling on politicians to “champion the plight of the safe drivers in the Poconos.”
Perhaps Paletta has not thoroughly investigated his claims that truck drivers use “innocent drivers” as “target practice.”
According to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation:
*In 2010, there were 121,312 reportable traffic crashes in Pennsylvania.
*In 2010, 157 Pennsylvania residents were injured or lost their lives in wrecks involving commercial vehicles.
*In 2010, far more accidents were attributed to alcohol than large trucks. 12,426 accidents were the result of alcohol.
*In 2010, there were 6,396 accidents involving trucks, resulting in 27 fatalities.
*In 2010, there were 6,396 accidents involving trucks, of those, less than 16% were at the fault of the truck driver– More than 80% of wrecks involving trucks in Pennsylvania, in 2010, were the fault of the car driver.
Perhaps, Paletta should worry more about careless and distracted car drivers and those who drink and drive.
If you would like to respond to Paletta’s letter, follow this link.