Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Single track vehicles?

Riding to work can take folks places you might not expect. Here's a local story that illustrates the point.

Our local Sheriff's deputies had an interesting call recently. Somewhere about a quarter to five in the morning Dispatch received a report. You know how the escalating meth problem is leading to an epidemic of metal thefts. The caller reported a metal theft in progress behind Pacific Power's yard. As you might have surmised that's our electricity provider.

You need to understand the area first. It's called Millersburg. Old Salem Road snakes out of Albany proper on its way to more rural surroundings. Along the way are three major employers. One's a metallurgical plant and the other two are plywood / paper mills. There's railroad service to these locations. The tracks basically lead out of town towards the countryside. Now you kind of have the picture.

The Boys show up and start the search for a perpetrator. One of them, ( a cop, not a perpetrator ) takes a walk around the area. They see what looks like the world's smallest locomotive coming down the tracks towards them. Interestingly, it doesn't sound like a train either. Turns out to be a guy on a motorcycle. Let's see. There's a report of a theft in progress and someone riding a motorcycle down the railroad tracks. At 5 AM. A radio's used and the crew tries to stop the bike. Nothing doing. Our motorcyclist escapes.

A perimeter is set up. There's only a couple of roads to cover. If the guy's coming out, it will be easy to spot him. Sure enough, the rider's spotted approaching Old Salem Road from a service road. A cruiser's sitting ready with a cop sitting on the hood. No lights. At least that's how I picture it. More accurately, the officer is probably in a "cover" type position while keeping watch. Our rider finally sees the car and gets ready to turn around. If this was Hollywood, the motorcyclist would execute a dirt bike type corner and disappear the other way in a rooster tail of dirt and rocks. This wasn't Hollywood and our rider wasn't real skilled.

In our real life tale when the rider slowed down to turn around the deputy pushed him off his motorcycle. Needless to say, he was soon taken into custody. Can you picture this guy sitting in jail? If someone asks him how he got caught, what's he going to say? It won't sound too macho if he tells the truth. How he was on his bike and a cop on foot pushed him off onto the ground. Maybe we could help him come up with something suitably impressive!

The metal theft is still unresolved. Our rider turns out to have had a legitimate reason for riding on the tracks. Seems his driver's license is suspended. Keeping to the spirit of the law, if not the letter, he avoided riding on public roads. The railroad tracks were his pathway to work. He might miss a few days of work, though. Our rider is being charged with attempt to elude and criminal tresspass. Presumably on top of driving while suspended. Weirdly enough, that one might be hard to convict on since the rider was on private property.

I don't know for sure what type of bike it was. Had to be something capable of hopping over the rail and negotiating the tracks. Maybe I should try that with Sophie. Just in case of a natural disaster you know. All the main roads will be plugged up but a single track vehicle can still get around!

Miles and smiles,



Steve Williams said...

The creative thinking that surrounds ownership of a suspended license never ends. If only that thinking was in place before the suspension...

Steve Williams
Scooter in the Sticks

Kano said...

I found myself sympathetic to the track rider. I hope he gets a break from the law on this one and that he learned his lesson about whatever he did to get his license suspended.

irondad said...

That applies to a lot of areas. You see all these new ways that come up to scam people. Then you think that if only these folks had applied that effort to legitimate endeavours!

Yeah, you never know what the background is. Some suspensions happen from overly punitive actions by the State. Years ago I was involved in an accident. One of the cops on scene told me I didn't need to worry about filing an accident report.

Down the road I get this thing in the mail that says if I don't file a report in the next few days my license will be suspended!

Once the driving privileges are taken away what's a guy to do? At least the rider was holding down a job, right?

Take care,


Bryce said...

As one whose primary hobby is railways, and whose income at one point depended upon writing for and
about railways for the rail fan
or rail buff can well understand
the situation. If said idjet
was on a railway track and he came upon a locomotive or even anything
resembling same, he'd have to bypass same, and therefore trespass on
non-railway property ie public property. He is in theory not supposed to be there.
Kudo's to the gendarme waiting for
the miscreant. Too bad there was a
camera available to record the hilarious incident. "pushed off
the motorcycle?" must've been real
interesting! Suspect the Genesee
and Wyoming RR was most interested in the end result!

Bryce said...

The following was sent to me as sort of an interesting comment about idiot car occupants...Dan will undersand
I am sure...

irondad said...

Love the article! I knew it somehow had to be my fault! If we made up bumper stickers with the whole sentence but just the first letter of each word in some color like red, how many drivers would think it was a real group?