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  #151  
Unread 07-29-2017, 08:51 PM
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mac88chp mac88chp is offline
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She must have been something special for you to make that long drive from Sunnyvale to Fresno and back! I used to have a girlfriend in Gilroy when I lived in San Jose and I thought that was a long round trip.

SR152 over Pacheco pass was a killer in those days. Narrow, very windy, nothing separating opposing traffic but a double yellow painted line. Since then they have widened it and added a median concrete barrier. Saved many lives no doubt.

The Los Banos area included SR 152 West all the way to Dinosaur Point, the County line. 0255 and I spent a lot of time up there. Perhaps I'll recall some more memories from there.
Yeah, she was special enough to make that drive for abut a year before she became wife #1 and moved over to the Bay Area with me. Still have a strong memory of those Friday night dashes to the Valley circa 1983-84. As a young guy with an objective like I had, once I came off the two-lane pass I was always pushing 10-15 mph over all the way around the reservoir and down and across SR152 then south down Highway 99. I learned quick to be vigilant and alert and I pretty much knew where to watch and slow down. Never got cited and had only one "white door warning" the whole time.

Repeated the drill 26 years later while courting wife #2 only this time for three years and the route was Monterey Bay to North SF Bay. Lots more traffic and congestion this time around made for a much less frantic pace.
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  #152  
Unread 07-30-2017, 01:37 AM
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Repeated the drill 26 years later while courting wife #2 only this time for three years and the route was Monterey Bay to North SF Bay. Lots more traffic and congestion this time around made for a much less frantic pace.
Yes, the memories from those early days. So many. The time period for your Fresno trips (1983-1984); that was exactly when 0255 and I were in service in the Los Banos area. You drove right past the CHP office in Los Banos each direction. I mostly worked day shift there, but occasionally evenings (off duty at about 10 pm) so it's possible you might have driven SR152 when I was out there. Who knows, I might have seen your vehicle on my beat.

Even though the speed limit was 55 at the time, and they wanted it enforced, I typically never stopped anyone for speed alone until they exceeded 70 (lots of white-door warnings), and even then it depended on traffic conditions. On holiday weekends the highways had a lot of traffic and the traffic flow usually exceeded 70. My main concern in those conditions was patrolling the beat to show a presence (visibility) so drivers hopefully would at least try to pay attention and drive safe, plus assist disabled vehicles (no cell phones, or emergency phones along the highway in those days). I always, as a personal philosophy, balanced enforcement with service.
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  #153  
Unread 07-30-2017, 08:04 PM
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Yes, the memories from those early days. So many. The time period for your Fresno trips (1983-1984); that was exactly when 0255 and I were in service in the Los Banos area. You drove right past the CHP office in Los Banos each direction. I mostly worked day shift there, but occasionally evenings (off duty at about 10 pm) so it's possible you might have driven SR152 when I was out there. Who knows, I might have seen your vehicle on my beat.

Even though the speed limit was 55 at the time, and they wanted it enforced, I typically never stopped anyone for speed alone until they exceeded 70 (lots of white-door warnings), and even then it depended on traffic conditions. On holiday weekends the highways had a lot of traffic and the traffic flow usually exceeded 70. My main concern in those conditions was patrolling the beat to show a presence (visibility) so drivers hopefully would at least try to pay attention and drive safe, plus assist disabled vehicles (no cell phones, or emergency phones along the highway in those days). I always, as a personal philosophy, balanced enforcement with service.
Had to be very tough to vigorously enforce the double-nickel by that time, esp. in the rural areas. I pretty much follow the basic speed law and never drive too fast for conditions and it's always kept me out of trouble. Yep, I'd always see the CHP office right on the main drag in Banos. How far east did the office cover on SR152?

Here's what I was driving back then, you'll notice I added those big fog lights which were super effective and a must have for those nighttime runs in that nasty valley fog.



I'd be passing thru Los Banos between 6-7pm on Fridays then back again between 5-6am on Monday mornings. Got my only white door warning while on 152 just past the SR33 Dos Palos exit. It was Friday about 7:30pm and a Mustang came up on me from the EB onramp after I passed the interchange. I knew the headlight signature well and had plenty of time to slow down and move to the #2 lane before he could get a pace. He knew I made him...what different times those were before radar and lidar!
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  #154  
Unread 07-30-2017, 09:42 PM
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I knew I'd seen that vehicle before...there was an enlarged photo of it in the briefing room with the caption "Watch out for this guy!" LOL, just kidding.

Seriously, do you remember if that white door warning was from an '82? Because that could have been me and 0255. Most of the time I was in Los Banos I worked day shift the East side of the area (beat 30-16), which included SR 152 East from Los Banos city to the Madera County line and SR 33 from the Dos Palos Y to just South of Mendota, and all the County roads and areas in between. A very large area, parts of 3 counties.

The Dos Palos exit off of SR 152 you referred to, we called that the Dos Palos Y because of the configuration of the interchange. One of my favorite breakfast and coffee pit stops was there; in fact coming out of that restaurant was where the pursuit I referred to in the first post on this thread started from. I would get up at 4:30 am on weekdays to get into the office for day shift, head out of Los Banos East to make an SR 152 beat check, then go get breakfast. So it is possible you saw 0255 and I out there.

Thinking about that area brings back even more memories.
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  #155  
Unread 07-31-2017, 07:44 PM
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I knew I'd seen that vehicle before...there was an enlarged photo of it in the briefing room with the caption "Watch out for this guy!" LOL, just kidding.

Seriously, do you remember if that white door warning was from an '82? Because that could have been me and 0255. Most of the time I was in Los Banos I worked day shift the East side of the area (beat 30-16), which included SR 152 East from Los Banos city to the Madera County line and SR 33 from the Dos Palos Y to just South of Mendota, and all the County roads and areas in between. A very large area, parts of 3 counties.

The Dos Palos exit off of SR 152 you referred to, we called that the Dos Palos Y because of the configuration of the interchange. One of my favorite breakfast and coffee pit stops was there; in fact coming out of that restaurant was where the pursuit I referred to in the first post on this thread started from. I would get up at 4:30 am on weekdays to get into the office for day shift, head out of Los Banos East to make an SR 152 beat check, then go get breakfast. So it is possible you saw 0255 and I out there.

Thinking about that area brings back even more memories.
Phew, glad I wasn't a BOL, didn't want to end up like this poor guy! LOL



Steve, I honestly can't recall the year of the Mustang or even the exact year ('83 or '84) that white door warning happened to me. I do remember it was enhanced by a quick on-off flash of the ruby in my direction before the officer floored it and disappeared into the night.

Who knows, we very well may have laid eyes upon one another out there in the westlands badland once upon a time.
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  #156  
Unread 07-31-2017, 08:11 PM
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Phew, glad I wasn't a BOL, didn't want to end up like this poor guy! LOL

One foot on the break and one on the gas....yep you can't drive 55, LOL!
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  #157  
Unread 07-31-2017, 09:40 PM
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Steve, I honestly can't recall the year of the Mustang or even the exact year ('83 or '84) that white door warning happened to me. I do remember it was enhanced by a quick on-off flash of the ruby in my direction before the officer floored it and disappeared into the night.

Who knows, we very well may have laid eyes upon one another out there in the westlands badland once upon a time.
It is possible. When I did work evening shift it was always on beat 30-16 (Westside). Some Officers didn't like driving the Mustangs, they drove the Dodge Diplomat instead. So it was likely one of only 3 or 4 possible officers that evening. Los Banos was a small office in those days; I think only about 16 or so Officers plus 2 or 3 Sergeants, a Lieutenant, and the Captain. Day shift would have 3 or 4 units, evenings the same, and Graveyard a single 2-man car. But sometimes vacations, court time, sick time, etc. would reduce the lineup. I remember one time when I was the only unit for the entire area on day shift. I put about 350 miles on 0255 in 8 hrs just trying to beat check all the main roadways at least once.
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  #158  
Unread 08-11-2017, 12:21 AM
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Default The Burning Oil

With 0327 in the shop for an extended time now, there's not much to do. I just worked for four days at a County Fair (LE), so I had time to reminisce about the old days again.

I always balanced enforcement with service. It is the way I always thought the job should be done and it enabled me to go home after a shift believing I was doing things the right way, a positive orientation.

One afternoon 0255 and I were working the East side of Los Banos on SR 152 when I observed a vehicle travelling Westbound that caught my attention. A lot of black smoke was coming out from underneath and from the sides of the engine compartment. This was clearly not exhaust smoke, and it didnít look like a transmission oil leak onto a hot exhaust pipe. No, something else was going on and there was enough smoke to justify immediate action.

I turned 0255 Westbound, closed fast on the subject vehicle, and activated the red spot light and wig wags. After a short distance the driver yielded to the shoulder and stopped. I made a driverís side approach. Black smoke was billowing out from under the hood. ďYouíve got something going on hereĒ I told the driver, an elderly man ďAnd I can see it isnít good.Ē He activated the hood release and exited the vehicle. As soon as I opened the hood the problem was obvious. The oil filler cap was missing, oil had splashed out all over the top of the engine, and eventually had caught fire. I grabbed 0255ís fire extinguisher and put out the fire, which had begun to include the spark plug wires. After a few minutes everything settled down and stabilized.

It turned out the driver had stopped for gasoline some miles back and decided to check the oil. It was low so he added a quart, but forgot to replace the oil cap, which was now lost. The vehicle clearly could not safely be driven any further. I called for a tow to take him the remaining 25 miles or so into a garage in Los Banos.

Now youíd think this driver would be grateful. Our action certainly saved his car which would likely have been past the point of saving within minutes of the time I stopped him, and perhaps a serious accident and injury had it gotten to the point where it caused him to crash. He might have even burned up along with it. Yes, driving along perfectly normal one minute, then stopped and having to be towed a short time later is inconvenient. But this guy acted as though it was somehow all my fault for stopping him. Not one word or demeanor of thanks, gratitude, or even recognition for rescuing him from his carelessness; instead it was as though it was me that was inconveniencing him.

Oh well; you canít please everyone. 0255 and I had once again done our duty. Perhaps at least the Karma Continuum had taken notice.
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