Getting Trucks Back in Control

For a time after the gas drilling boom hit the Northern Panhandle, it seemed as if most of the companies involved were trying hard to be good neighbors. Big trucks were preceded by pilot cars. Damaged highways were repaired. Gas companies even told their drivers to stay off certain roads when school buses were present.

Some gas companies and their subcontractors still appear to be keeping to the good neighbor philosophy. Others do not.

To many area residents, it probably seems as if the relationship between us and a few of those involved in the gas industry has deteriorated. We hear frequent complaints about encounters with big trucks and the damage they cause to many roads.

Marshall County Sheriff Kevin Cecil seems to have noticed that, too. His deputies have launched a crackdown on truckers, whatever their business, who do not follow the rules. Chief Deputy Bill Helms told our reporter certain areas of the county have been targeted for enforcement of laws against trucks speeding, driving left of center and traveling without pilot vehicles.

“We’ve had great success with this,” Helms noted. He explained truck drivers’ behavior seems to have improved in the targeted areas.

Helms also noted his department relies on the public to tip deputies off to problem areas. If you know of one in Marshall County, you can call the sheriff’s office at 304-845-1500.

Cecil’s campaign is appropriate – and needed. Sheriffs in other Northern Panhandle counties should undertake similar crackdowns, if they have not already.

Again, some gas companies and their subcontractors try to be considerate. Those who don’t should receive forceful reminders misbehavior will not be tolerated.