Oklahoma Highway Patrol Will Track Holiday Speeders From Airplane

Monday, December 23rd 2019, 10:42 pm
By: Kristen Weaver

With so many people on the roads for Christmas, troopers are keeping drivers safe from above.

The Oklahoma Highway Patrol is using aircraft to crack down on dangerous drivers, so travelers can make it to their destination safely.

Troopers said over the weekend they clocked several drivers going faster than 100 miles an hour on the turnpikes, as OHP tracked them from the sky.

Trooper Eddie Rose kept eyes on dangerous drivers from the skies in his OHP plane.

“We look for someone following too close, pushing left lane law, and check for reckless driving. I even saw some passing on the shoulder,” said Rose.

Rose said the OHP Aircraft division will often do traffic patrol if they're not busy with a manhunt or other task.

On Saturday, Rose patrolled the Will Rogers Turnpike near Claremore and used a stopwatch and mile markers to track speeds.

“We caught several around the 100 mark that day,” Rose said.

He said they will tell troopers on the ground if they notice a violation, like staying in the left lane too long or following too closely.

"Call out to the trooper, give the description, and we say when they’re behind the right vehicle,” Rose said, “and take whatever enforcement action he feels is appropriate."

Drivers like Allison Parsons and Tyler Stuessy said they've noticed extra law enforcement presence recently but didn't know about the plane patrol.

“Being able to catch somebody before they see a cop if you don't know they're following you, it could be a good thing,” Parsons said.

Rose said with heavy holiday traffic, speeding just isn't worth it.

"If you end up in a crash or injured, your trip’s ruined,” said Rose.

Troopers said they plan to continue keeping an eye on the roadways from their aircraft throughout the Christmas week.

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