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Pedal to the metal: Probe reveals some cops drive just too fast

It’s well known that drivers who speed are responsible for far too many car accidents on our nation’s highways. What isn’t as well known is that some of these motorists traveling too fast are police officers.

CBS News recently reported on an investigation by the Sun-Sentinel newspaper in Florida that found nearly 800 police officers from 12 Florida agencies who drove between 90 to 130 miles per hour on state highways.

And these police officers weren’t always speeding while chasing down offenders. Often, they were traveling at these high rates of speed on the way back and forth to work, according to the newspaper’s study.

Speeding police officers can cause their own share of serious car crashes. The CBS News story profiles a man who in 2008 was rear-ended while stopped at a red light by a police officer in his squad car. The man’s vehicle jumped forward 250 feet. According to reports, the police officer had been driving at more than 100 miles per hour. The 23-year-old victim will reportedly need round-the-clock care for the rest of his life.

According to the Sun-Sentinel investigation, speeding police officers caused 230 accidents in Florida from 2004 through 2010. In these car accidents, 21 people were killed or maimed, seven of whom were police officers. The investigatory probe also found that many officers who cause high-speed car accidents never receive tickets.

Roadways across the country, including in Ohio, see far too many deadly car crashes. Unfortunately, police officers sometimes contribute to the problem, not the solution.

Source: CBS News, “Extreme police speeding investigated in Florida,” Mark Strassmann, March 20, 2012