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Lodi traffic unit awards good drivers

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Posted: Friday, November 18, 2011 12:00 am | Updated: 11:02 am, Wed Jan 30, 2013.

The Lodi Police Traffic Unit was out Thursday pulling over drivers — but not necessarily for tickets.

Drivers who displayed good driving skills and safety measures, from wearing their seat belts to not talking or texting on their cell phones, were pulled over and given gift certificates for anything from a cup of coffee to a free turkey.

This is the third year the Lodi Police Department has collected gift certificates from local businesses to hand out to the community. This year, they collected 55 gift certificates — the most they ever have, said Officer Brian Freeman, who organized the event.

Freeman said officers who participated in handing out certificates would pull up next to drivers at a stop light or stop sign and ask them if they could speak with them. The officers would then hand them a gift certificate and thank them for following the law.

"It's fun to be able to pull people over for doing something good," said Sgt. Chris Jacobson. "Contrary to popular belief, we don't like giving out traffic tickets all the time."

Donations for the event were made by the following local businesses: Habanero Hots, House of Coffees, Rancho San Miguel, Velvet Grill, Safeway, Raley's, Chili's, Apple Market and Food 4 Less.

Contact reporter Katie Nelson at katien@lodinews.com.

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  • Kevin Paglia posted at 3:11 pm on Fri, Nov 18, 2011.

    Kevin Paglia Posts: 1880

    I agree in regards to the two cyclists. We, as cyclists need to remember that we are little more than a hood ornament if things go bad. Our best safety device is our own intelligence, if we don't use it then we WILL get hit eventually.

  • Joanne Bobin posted at 11:47 am on Fri, Nov 18, 2011.

    Joanne Bobin Posts: 4301

    Agree, Mr. Paglia.

    I live on a major north/south thoroughfare and just getting out of my driveway is a major task at times. But what gets me the most is backing out with no oncoming traffic (there are stop signs at both the north and south intersections), no one at either stop sign, then suddenly a car comes up behind me. They HAD to have seen me backing out, giving them plenty of time to slow down, but no, they get right up behind my car, a few feet at most, as if giving me a message that I am slowing them down. Because they are in a vehicle, they think they can give threatening messages to other drivers.

    One woman, who came out of nowhere, even had the nerve to lay on her horn, and when I didn't move fast enough, called 911 and reported me to the police. While I was at the grocery store, my husband called to tell me that the police arrived and said they had a report of a person blocking traffic at our address.

    Mr. Paglia - I often travel to and from Stockton on Davis Road and DeVries Road. Whenever I see cyclists, I make sure I give them a wide berth. You never know when a cyclist might hit a rock and fall into the path of an auto coming from behind. On the other hand, yesterday I saw two cyclists (dressed in bike gear) just blast through the stop sign on Mills at Tienda Drive, never looking left or right. Any cyclist who doesn't respect traffic laws themself has no room to complain.

  • Kevin Paglia posted at 8:21 am on Fri, Nov 18, 2011.

    Kevin Paglia Posts: 1880

    Considering the absolute horrible driving I have seen the past week or so I wouldn't mind see the LPD do a wide spread traffic sweep. Last night at the same intersection i saw two cars run a red light. Not at the same time like one just followed the other through. No, one in front of me slowed when the turn light turned red then shot through when the cross traffic had the light. later some death trap Bug shot through heading south didn't even slow for her red light, if there had been cross traffic at that time she would have killed someone.

    I'm seeing more and more cars use turn lanes to pass cars and go straight.

    My son regularly reports cars driving in the bike lane on Century almost hitting him in the mornings. I was out riding yesterday and some car on Davis decided to pass another coming at me and swerved so far in the pass attempt they actually came into my bike lane. fifty feet closer and I would have been a hood ornament.

    Can someone please tell me WHY getting to the next stop light to wait longer is so important that drivers are willing to risk other people's lives?

    I've said it before and I'll say it again. Traffic fines need to be tripled, at least.



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