Ha ha, you’re going to jail

I was reading this story today about how the new freeway message boards encouraging drivers to call 911 if they suspect someone is driving under the influence were very effective this holiday season and couldn’t help but wonder.

Has anyone ever called 911 to report a suspected drunk driver? Is it an easy process? If so, I have to think this can really get out of hand in a jif. Get cut off this morning on the W-X? Fix their wagon by dropping the 9-1-1 on their ass! Have a buddy that is always one-upping you? Here’s a way you can have the last word. What about the night club scene? I can see it now. A dude sees a gal that he is really sweet on. He walks over to buy her a drink but is intercepted at the last minute by a larger, buffer dude who closes the deal. They take off together and dude decides to let his fingers do the walking.

But seriously, folks, what’s the deal with this program? If anyone knows the 4-1-1 on the 9-1-1 feel free to drop a comment and get the word out.

Author: RonTopofIt

RonTopofIt is a complex personality, as are most of the small breed of modern day renaissance millionaires. He wishes more people were like him and yet believes that it takes all kinds. You've met RonTopofIt many times, you just don't remember him.

13 thoughts on “Ha ha, you’re going to jail”

  1. Isn’t the cell phone 911 system notoriously tied up? Haven’t we each heard first-hand accounts of callers being on hold for several minutes while dialing 911 on a cell, only to have it answered by someone in Santa Ana? Are you supposed to trail the suspected drunk driver until you’re connected to a dispatcher? That doesn’t seem exactly safe.

    A former coworker of mine would seek revenge on those who’d wronged him by calling in their license plates to the END SMOG smoking vehicle hotline phone number (a former, defunct program of the Air Quality Management District/Air Resources Board that had drivers with smog emitting vehicles jump through some regulatory hoops.)

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  2. I used to make an annual trek to Merced on NYE, and inevitably would have to call 911 because drivers were so impaired they would scare me. I have realized success only once. Two years ago I was driving home and someone was tailgating then they would speed up and get in front and slow down, I called 911, gave them details on the car and licence plate and then slowed way down to let them get a few miles ahead and reduce the threat to me and mine. About 15 miles later, I saw the driver on the side of the road getting searched by CHP. Yay! I like to think it was my call and not just a speed trap that locked one Drunkard up for the night. On the other hand I have been told on more than one occation to take the next exit and just wait a few minutes before resuming my travel. This makes me wonder, if that driver hit someone else after my call, would the 911 people be liable? I guess there is no way to know.

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  3. My husband drove behind an apparently pickled driver all the way from Vacaville to Stockton Blvd. He called 911 three times, never saw an officer respond. The driver was weaving all over the place.

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  4. From today’s SacBee:

    However, I see a problem that is very disturbing to me. For the past month or so I have seen several signs along the highway asking for motorists to call 911 to report drunken drivers, especially during the holiday season. My husband and I were driving home on New Year’s from a celebration and found ourselves driving behind a car whose driver was obviously intoxicated. We called 911 right away in hopes of getting this person off of the road before something tragic happened. Unfortunately, our call was placed on hold for so long that we eventually gave up. It was very discouraging, being on hold while the driver in front of us was risking his own life and the lives of others. This is not the first time it has happened to us. I have called 911 on two other separate occasions and both times was put on hold for long periods of time.

    Maybe it isn’t so easy to prank your buddy with this trick after all. Back to loosening the salt shaker lid, I guess.

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  5. The reason cellphone 911 operators are tied up is because so many people are using cellphones for local emergencies they are keeping the operators from getting to highway emergencies. A drunk driver on the road is what cellular 911 is there for.

    Maybe if Schwartzeneggar hadn’t shut down the CHP academy for a year, someone would be able to respond to your 911 call. I guarantee that CHP operators will take your report seriously, and I highly recommend you do as well. Drunk driving is reckless, thoughtless behavior that puts countless people in unnecessary danger.

    Call 335-5555. Two volunteers will come to your location, drive you home in your own car, then hop back in theirs and leave you to wake up with your car on your doorstep for that 11am run to Walgreens for some aspirin.

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  6. Kit, may the Schwartzeneggar be with you!

    But seriously, you bring up an interesting point. There are two types of 911? Cellular and Landular? Please to explain…

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  7. Cell 911 calls go to the CHP, while landline 911 go to your local authorities who then route the calls to the appropriate agencies. There is a new SacPD communications center off of San Joaquin near the Tahoe-Tallac Park off of 65th Street, and Sacramento County has a large comm center out off of Bradshaw. Operators are trained to give medical and other emergency info over the phone until help can arrive in person.

    Even if you don’t have home phone live in your house, you should still keep a “real” phone plugged into an outlet because you can still dial 911 from it. Be sure it’s not a cordless phone too because those don’t work in power outages.

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  8. Runnergirl, every town has a “cellular” alternative number for 911, so you can get the local cops on your cell phone. The numbers are on the front-page of their websites, in Sacramento it is 916-732-0100.

    Another trick if you don’t know the local number (which I just had to do in Oakland a few weeks ago) is to call 411 and ask to be connected. Make sure to specify “The [CITY NAME] police EMERGENCY line”, they sometimes tell you to call 911 and you have to briefly explain that you want the local one instead of the CHP.

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