In 2009, North Carolina (NC) Highway Patrol troopers were involved in seven car wrecks per week, or one car accident per day throughout the year, according to ABC11.com. This is an increase of 44 percent from 2008.
Obviously, these troopers work in a high-risk profession and put themselves in harm's way on a regular basis, but 30 percent of the car crashes these troopers were involved in are considered "preventable accidents." That means the trooper could have avoided the wreck.
As a result, the NC Highway Patrol paid out $703,000 in taxpayer money between 2008 and 2009 to people involved in car accidents where the trooper was found to be at fault. In the same time period, another $300,000 in taxpayer money was spent to replace 15 cruisers that were totaled in car accidents where a trooper was found liable. That's over $1 million in taxpayer money spent on preventable Highway Patrol accidents.
Here's a news report discussing the high number of NC trooper car wrecks:
These numbers need to go down. The percentage of Highway Patrol accidents caused by the trooper should be zero percent. Why? Because these troopers are supposed to exemplify safe driving practices. Once again, this is not an indictment of the NC Highway Patrol. They do amazing work and should be commended for what they do. But the numbers don't lie. Too many people are getting seriously injured, and too much taxpayer money is being spent, on preventable car accidents caused by these troopers.