On November 28th, the Wallenpaupack Area School District held its November Emergency Responder Club meeting which focused on state police traffic stop procedures and policies.
Blooming Grove State Police Sergeant Brian Vennie and Trooper Shandra Keeler discussed the Pennsylvania State Police requirements and qualifications; they also explained the different divisions for which state police personnel may work. They shared the experiences they have had in choosing public safety as a career. Vennie and Keeler commented that the most rewarding aspects of state police work stem from helping others and serving the community.
However, the main focus of Vennie’s and Keeler’s presentation was dedicated to covering Pennsylvania driving laws and traffic violations; Sergeant Vennieexplained to the students how they as drivers should conduct themselves if ever an officer pulled them over, including proper identifications they should be able to produce. Venniethen outlined safe driving practices, proper vehicle equipment, driver responsibility, speed limits and road conditions and more. Career Coordinator Colleen Edwards commented, "Every young adult driver would benefit greatly from hearing this presentation."
Afterwards, Vennie and Keeler staged a vehicle pull-over simulation. Trooper Keeler asked Emergency Club member Jonathan Urbanskito participate in the demonstration. Once the senior drove his car into the school parking lot, Keeler pulled up behind his car with lights flashing and proceeded to approach his car to conduct a traffic violation stop.
Many of them were unaware of some of the vehicle equipment violations that could result in tickets, fines, or other actions. The members appreciated the live simulation as they did not fully realize additional considerations that a driver might face when the state police stop their vehicles.
Career Coordinator Colleen Edwards thanked Seargeant Vennie and Trooper Keeler for offering to speak to the Emergency Responder Club members. She noted that the information was valuable and extremely relevant to them not only as young adult drivers, but also as individuals who already are junior emergency service volunteers.