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Saving a few minutes is not worth the risk

Stop! You move too fast. I’d like to write about speed and time saved. Hold on, by no means am I a scholar mathematician. I hope your thinking caps are on.

If you travel one mile per hour, you roughly travel 1.5 feet per second. Now for the math: so, 25 mph equals 37 feet per second; 35 mph is 51 feet per second; 45 mph is 66 feet per second; and 55 mph is almost 81 feet per second. I think you get the point.

Now let’s think about time saved. According to an ABC News traffic technology study, the average commute to work is 16 miles, one way. Let’s extrapolate. (I can’t believe I spelled that right). Ready, go: 16 miles is 84,480 feet. Driving 60 mph crossing 84,480 feet would take 16 minutes, not including lights and traffic conditions. If we drove 70 mph, it would take 13.7 minutes to trek the distance, not to mention we’re breaking the speed limit.

Now, let’s be even more realistic. Our speed limits in Boulder City neighborhoods are usually 25 mph. On Georgia Avenue, Adams and Buchanan boulevards, the speed limit is 35 mph, unless school is in session; then it’s 15 mph on Adams.

Back to our travels. Let’s just say the average drive distance in Boulder City is 2 miles or 10,560 feet. At 25 mph, it would take 4.8 minutes to get to where we’re going. If we drive at 35 mph it would take 3.4 minutes. So, will saving 1.4 minutes in town help anyone get out of a ticket any faster? Or will saving 2.3 minutes on the way to work really get you there early?

Worst case scenario. Let’s say we’re late because we failed to plan. Now we exceed the safe speed. How much time do we really save? Will a minute here or there save a ticket, accident or the risk of being injured? I know we all get in a pickle once in a while, but a pickle a day will not keep the police away. Please, drive the speed limit and wear your seat belt.

Rolling, rolling, rolling. “Control, 269, we’ll be 10-8 in service.”

Feb. 2. Super Bowl 2014! Oops, sorry if that’s a sore subject. Believe it or not the night went by unobtrusively, except for a few drunk drivers. The after-game parties ended and the intoxicated drivers unfortunately tried to get home. Extra staff was in place to scoop them up. There was more than a football team losing; several drivers had overnight accommodations provided.

Feb. 3. Officers were out near Elm Street serving a warrant. Serving warrants is kind of like fishing. We may not catch one every time, but this time we did. The resident has an outstanding traffic warrant. Now that person will be in Henderson Detention Center until court on Tuesday. Silly, just pay your tickets.

Feb. 4. Officers get dispatched to a residence regarding a teenager threatening suicide. The caller reports the teenager has a belt and wants to hang himself. Officers quickly arrive and de-escalate the fragile situation successfully. The young man was transported to the hospital.

Feb. 5. A local tow company calls to report a stolen vehicle. Apparently, an arrested subject’s car was towed Saturday. Well, the subject got out of jail and discovered which tow company had the car. When the tow company opened its gate to move another car, the recently released convict was hiding in his car, drove the car out of the tow yard without paying, and apparently stole another car’s license plate. The car was entered into the criminal database as stolen. He got away for now, but not for long.

Feb. 6. An evening out ends up back at home. Apparently an intoxicated female attempts to rent a room at a local hotel. One problem: The credit card is in her boyfriend’s name and hotel personnel refuse to take the card since someone isn’t with her. Officers courteously provide the young lady a ride back to her residence.

Feb. 7. A couple out for an evening walk ends up with a view from behind bars. A couple jaywalks in front of a police officer on Nevada Highway near the Rebel gas station. Hello, officer? A check of the subjects reveals the male half has active warrants out of Boulder City, Henderson and Las Vegas. Trifecta! By the way, the Las Vegas warrant was for jaywalking.

As I worked this week I thought, we cross the threshold of ambiguity, enter into a room with a definite life-changing clarity. I can’t help but think within minutes lives change in front of our eyes. As we walk through the next week remember to be responsible, respect self and others, and please be safe. I heard something this week and thought, let’s keep making Boulder City a model community of unity.

I almost forgot: Take care of your sweetheart; it’s Valentine’s Day tomorrow.

Officer Jeffrey Grasso is a 10-year veteran of the Boulder City Police Department. He previously served as a police officer in south Florida for four years.

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