Operation Yellow Jacket Set To Sting Speeders In NEPA

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LUZERNE COUNTY -- The holiday travel season is upon us, a time when millions of Americans take to the highways.

In northeastern Pennsylvania, interstate traffic will increase and state police say so will the odds of fatal crashes.

"Two weeks ago, there were three accidents. Two on (Route) 924 here and one on the interstate right here, and a friend of mine was in it and he's in bad shape. You know, people flying, not paying attention, on their phones," said James Rodino of Hazle Township.

And so, some state troopers are climbing out of their vehicles and into yellow PennDOT trucks to spot aggressive drivers and speeders. Those troopers then radio ahead to the waiting patrol cars.

"Yeah, I think it would work, I mean because people aren't going to expect it. They're going to be looking for police cars, not PennDOT trucks,” said Rodino.

"Any way to utilize the Pennsylvania trucks to help keep us safe I think is a great idea,” said Bradley Pernick of Nuremberg.

PennDOT officials say, when drivers see marked patrol cars, they instinctively tap their brakes and slow down.

They're hoping Operation Yellow Jacket will teach those drivers to also slow down when they see PennDOT vehicles, keeping them safe and the PennDOT workers safe.

“I think it's a good idea. Not everybody pays attention to even the police or state troopers,” said Crystal Johnson of Freeland.


  • Jess

    So usually Penn dot pays people to stand around and do nothing now there getting paid to drive police around ! Crazy! The police should do their own jobs and Penn dot should be tring to get this road work done before winter! And fill some pot holes!

  • I AM The Antipope.

    All these Pennsylvania State Troopers should be called up for the draft and sent to Iraq to fight ISIS.

    Real tough guys!

  • common sense is dead

    check me if I’m wrong sandy, but shouldn’t penndot trucks be used exclusively for roadway repair and maintenance?

    • Wish They Did

      They don’t really do much maintenance and after Oct. 31 they don’t do any, regardless of weather conditions! Just one more state worker riding around in a PennDOT truck!!!

  • Joe

    A sneaky way to make interstates toll roads! If they cared about safety, speed limits would be posted at the 85th percentile free-flowing traffic speed. More safety, only bad drivers cited. Radar also makes many errors, which is never brought up. Pull up Radargate Revisited. Why are clueless people always put on TV?

    Check out the National Motorists Association.

  • Laughing

    Sounds like entrapment to me — the police are working on the clock but not in their own department vehicles. So who is fitting the bill for the use of the vehicles ? PennDot ? The State Police ? – Oh waits, it’s ultimately the taxpayer that fits the bill. So while there is a drug epidemic and robbery and theft epidemic going on in Northeastern PA, it is more important to pay officers to sit in a different department’s vehicles. Which also means that they are on the job but are not allowed to respond to any calls becuase they are not in official state police vehicles. They are not undercover detectives that can pretend to be something they are not, they are state troopers that are supposed to be in an official police vehicle.
    It’s goign to be great to hear the stories on the news on how many people they stopped, and then see a story how some placed got robbed because there were no cops around.

  • Fill the Coffers

    Easy money for PA. Nail the out of staters who’ll just write a check! Do the speed limit on 81 and a trooper goes by you like you’re standing still! No lights flashing, nothing, just flying! Yeah, they should definitely pull others over and take their money for going slower than they do. Maybe they should focus on the drugs instead of speeding!

  • Little Confused

    Isnt this semi entrapment? playing leapfrog is kinda unfair, and I just think if they are going to try and fill quotas so they can get that christmas bonus, cant they do it at least in a freaking actual cop car?

  • nojustice_nopeace

    “I think it’s a good idea. Not everybody pays attention to even the police or state troopers,” said Crystal Johnson of Freeland.
    How about everyone just pay attention to driving safe?! Wow, what a concept!

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