Troopers Stopping Trucks To Check Loads : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

Troopers Stopping Trucks To Check Loads One Driver Doesn't Think It's Effective

POSTED: 9:44 a.m. EDT October 13, 2001

LODI, Ohio - Ted Hart: On Interstate 76 (Friday), state troopers were pulling off all trucks with hazardous material placards. Trooper Gary Wolfe, Ohio Highway Patrol: Good afternoon ... going to do a quick safety check on you here today.

Hart: Trooper Gary Wolfe checks everything from the driver's license and paperwork to a look inside the trailer.

Wolfe: Under the circumstances, we're checking everything ... (There are) two questions we're wanting to know. Where you coming from? And where are you going?

Hart: The FBI warnings of a possible threat of terrorism in the next several days ranges from diplomatic sites overseas to possible truck bombs in the United States. Over the past several weeks, federal investigators have been looking at records from truck driving schools for any evidence of possible terrorist connections. For two weeks now, Ohio State troopers have been stopping and inspecting trucks with Haz-Mat placards at seven to eight times their normal inspection rate.

Wolfe: Looking for suspicious type of loads ... making sure the paperwork matches, if the driver has the proper code and certification or worst case scenario ... a stolen truck.

Hart: It's a time consuming stop for truckers, for whom time is money. And while they understand why it's being done, they don't all necessarily agree with it.

Ivan Dowdle, Steubenville truck driver: I think it's an inconvenience not necessary because I don't think a terrorist driving down the road with a bomb on is going to stop in at one of these weigh stations with a sign on his truck saying see what I got.

Hart: Highway patrol officers are not only watching trucks. In recent weeks, there have been two incidents in northeast Ohio, where troopers stopped motorists who had the same name of someone on the FBI's wanted list. FBI agents were called to the scene. And in both cases, the individuals were cleared. Same name, but that's as far as it went.

-- Martin Thompson (, October 13, 2001

Moderation questions? read the FAQ