A Phoenix police officer was injured in a collision with red-light-runner at Sweetwater and 43rd Ave. The red-light-runner was described only as “elderly”. As a result of the collision, both vehicles careened out of control up and over the sidewalks, one striking a tree and another a wall. Although there were three fairly minor injuries, it appears serious injury (or fatality) was only avoided by a stroke of luck that no one was walking there. How often do cars drive up over the sidewalk?
azcentral.com news report:
A car reportedly ran a red light and slammed into a Phoenix police SUV, leaving the officer and two others injured Thursday morning, according to authorities. The police SUV was heading east on Sweetwater Avenue about 9:30 a.m., said Lt. Ben Leuschner of the Phoenix Police Department. The car, with an elderly couple inside, was going south on 43rd Avenue. The car ran a red light and slammed into the police SUV, according to police. The car ended up hitting a wall and the police SUV was pushed off the side of the road. All three people had to be extricated from their vehicles. The officer’s injuries weren’t considered serious. The conditions of the people in the car weren’t immediately available.
I don’t know anything about that area of town, however, I will comment that Sweetwater looks like a nice calm road, whereas 43rd Ave is a standard city of Phoenix car-sewer.
Tragedies just keep on coming
… A few days later on May 19th, Phoenix police officer Daryl Raetz was killed while “processing a DUI suspect near 51st and Cambridge avenues when he was struck by a green Ford Expedition, which then fled the scene”. azcentral.com. The story doesn’t give much detail, i would assume from what was presented he was a pedestrian.
Police work is dangerous
Although it seems obvious that police work is dangerous because there are bad guys with guns trying to kill them; roughly the same number of policeman killed in the line of duty die as the result of a traffic collision than by being shot (or stabbed). The Officer Down Memorial Page lists and categorizes all law enforcement deaths in the line of duty across the US. The exact numbers, of course, float around from year-to-year; in 2012 there were 52 gun/knife deaths (54 if you include 2 from accidental gunfire), and 48 traffic deaths (21 automobile “accident” 5 motorcycle “accident”, 6 struck by vehicle, 5 Vehicle pursuit, 11 vehicle assault — usually dui’s).
Of local interest: on May 6, 2013 Arizona DPS officer Tim Huffman was killed when a semi-truck inexplicably slammed into his parked cruiser on I-8, on the scene of a previous collision. This was despite all sorts of flashing lights (there were numerous units on the scene for the prior crash), cones, and waving arms. The yumasun reported DPS arrested Jorge Espinoza a few days later on 2nd degree murder and a string of endangerment-type charges associated with the crash. They were mum on what factors might have been involved (impairment?). 2nd degree murder normally indicates impairment.