What's left of the State Police cruiser from that Expressway crash

State Police cruiser in ruins

State Police released photos of the patrol car a trooper was in on I-93 south early Saturday when, police say, another car plowed into it - along with a statement by State Police Col. Richard McKeon:

Every motor vehicle stop, and every response to a crash, puts troopers, police officers, and emergency and maintenance responders at risk for their own safety. We are very grateful to these professionals for the dangers they accept routinely as part of doing their jobs.

We are especially grateful that the injuries to the trooper hit this morning were not far, far worse. That they were not, is a reminder of the critical importance for any motorist to wear a seatbelt. We are hopeful for a full recovery for him, and we also wish recoveries for the other victims.

State Police say charges are likely against the driver of the other car once their investigation into the crash, which injured six people, is finished.

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Comments

Police lights on the highway

I have found that when approaching a wreck or traffic stop on the highway, it's not clear which side of the road the police car is on. It's something about the flashes and patterns that makes it look like the police car is on the left.

This might account for impaired drivers swerving at the last second into the patrol car.

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#protip

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#ProTip #1: Slow the fuck down if you see flashing lights and can't figure out which side of the highway it is on.

#ProTip #2: Get your vision checked. If you can't tell where a police car is, you probably can't see the pedestrians and cyclists all over the roads, either.

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Thanks, Mr. Pro!

Hadn't thought of that! Maybe we should have bigger and more disorienting lights on the cop cars too, why haven't we tried that?

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Seriously?

If you find them disorienting, you maybe should have your vision checked. I'm a freaking mole, but I don't seem to have this problem because I get regular eye exams (and I encountered such a situation fairly recently).

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Flashing strobe lights in the middle of the night

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Are VERY disorienting, whether or not you have a minor vision issue. Many people have glasses and contact lenses. Have there been studies on whether these strobe lights have a negative effect?

Remember back in the day when there was a single light on the top of a patrol car? Why do we need a dozen disorienting strobe lights on cars today? Without knowing the statistics, I would not be surprised if these lights cause more wrecks than they prevent.

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Police lights design flaw

My business is judging visual appearances especially in relative positions near and far, and the effects of light, color and rythm on perceptions. I have just noticed this uncertainty say 10-15 seconds from a flashing police light on a dark highway.

Maybe it's my imagination or the effect is negligible. But in this case I see a danger in just loading on the lights and colors, and the moral badgering, as if a louder bullhorn will just get people to do the right thing in the face of a design flaw. The danger of that kind of mistake only goes up in the case of police policy.

There's going to be a lot more impairment on our roads from drugs and aging. If I could get to the designers of police cars I would suggest they look into lights which indicate for drivers where to go rather than those that just scream "get away" louder and louder.

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Seriously? Seriously?

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Of course they are distracting, if you dont find that to be the case, perhaps you really, really need to get your eyes checked.

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They are meant to be distracting

However, if you can't tell where they are on a road that is 3-4 lanes wide, I'm betting it isn't a design flaw but a vision issue.

MA is horrible at testing for vision issues.

As for "more impairments of age", well then - that means more need for regional public transportation, not encouraging impaired people to drive ( a privilege, not a right, btw)

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I'm betting design flaw.

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I'm betting design flaw. When they switched police lights to ultra-bright, ultra-strobey LED's, they probably evaluated them by how bright they are, and far away they can be seen. "You can see them from two miles away? Great! I'll take a dozen."

What they might not have studied is the effect of strobe lights on vision. Previous studies (I don't have time to find them) have proven that LED brake lights that "bloom" spatially when they turn on over the course of milliseconds trigger a faster response through the human eye than LED brake lights that blink on instantaneously (wrt the speed of the human vision) over the course of microseconds. The eye is understandably more sensitive to motion than to things that suddenly appear out of nowhere.

The same effect is probably at play with LED police light bars. When they twinkle too fast with a sharp cutoff with way too much light, it confuses your vision.

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chill the f out.

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Lights on police cars have gotten exponentially brighter, in addition to more numerous, in the last 10 years. My vision is great (20/13 and 20/16 left and right respectively) but at night the current crop of police car lights are painfully bright. I mean painful in the literal sense, it makes my eyes hurt.

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This. I'm 20/20 in both eyes

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This. I'm 20/20 in both eyes and find some police lights painfully bright at night. I know they're supposed to have night mode but I sometimes question if they use it.

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More to vision than 20/20

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There are a lot of ways eyes can be messed up. This is why the RMV test is a joke.

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The lights are designed to be

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The lights are designed to be appropriately visible in full sunlight. They are supposed to be dimmed at night, but cops don't understand subtlety. Perhaps they should remove the switch and just use a sensor.

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The State Police should

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The State Police should change their fleet of cars, these Ford Product police cars are not safe in collisions , The State should replace them with Volvos and Volvo wagons instead of Cheaply made Ford Explorers Volvos are used as highway police cruisers in Sweden, the most safest.

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I agree, and from my brief

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I agree, and from my brief stints temping at Massachusetts state gigs in various (appalling) capacities,. And that said, the MBTA fleet is well overdue for an upgrade as well, so many old late 90s/early 00s Ford Tauruses and other totally shit cars that wouldn't survive in a crash begging for an upgrade. Lots of great employees though, don't doubt them.

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These are newer Ford Explorers that have police packages....

Which Ford makes.

I'm guessing a Volvo XC90 or XC60 with after market police gear (lights, bumpers, sirens, prisoner glass,) would increase the price significantly and you would not see that much difference in rear or even side crash impacts.

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Beyond that

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You'd probably hear cries of Buy America. Similar to the fuss over Cambridge using BMWs and not Harleys for their motorcycles.

Anyway, didn't Ford own Volvo for a time there? Bought them, got info on the safety features to use them in their Fords and then sold them? The car companies change hands often, from what I can tell. It's one way to get info on tech.

(edit: whoops - just read Mark's comment below)

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Closer than you think

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There's a reason Ford bought Volvo several years back and then sold them off years later. That sort of R&D is expensive!

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Just look at the photo of

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Just look at the photo of that State Police Ford Explorer if someone was in the back seat at the time of the rear collision he or she would've been paralyzed or killed, the Suv looks like a crushed Pepsi can,.
Remember , Ford does not use the Steele on their vehicles they once did use 40 or 50 years ago. They've been cutting corners to save costs by using cheap materials for their vehicles with less safety features. Sadly fooling the uneducated consumer .

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I am looking at it.

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...and I see collision damage that stops at the cargo compartment. You can see the entire back crumpled, as designed, and the crumple zone stops at the passenger cell.

The fact that you don't understand the purpose of crumple zones means you're pretty ignorant as to actual crash safety technology.

The Explorer is based off the Ford D3 platform, which was based off the Volvo P2 platform.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ford_D3_platform

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