Field Operations

Field Ops focuses on reducing traffic deaths and injuries.

Understandably, the focus of field operations is to make a difference by reducing the numbers of serious injuries and deaths that occur in vehicular crashes on Wyoming's highways.

To that end, the patrol's nearly 210 highway troopers drive more than 5-million miles a year patrolling all along the 6,800-mile state highway system. While there they will write 89,000 citations, on the average, to drivers who violate the highway-safety traffic laws of the state. Typically a trooper will write a citation, issue a warning or provide a motorist an "assist," one time for every 30 miles he or she patrols.

They will also investigate the more-than 7,000 vehicle crashes that occur yearly, often as the first on hand to provide first aid to victims. They will spend 15,000 hours doing follow-up investigation and reports.

And when the bad guys flee from the law, an all-too-frequent occurrence these days, it's the Wyoming Highway Patrol that will be giving chase. For all these "pursuits," troopers utilize a fleet of vehicles that can get up and down the road with the best (better put, "worst") of them. Each trooper is issued, along with his uniforms, a "take-home" vehicle that is his responsibility. In addition every patrol vehicles is equipped with video equipment. The video cameras help document regular traffic stops and crash scenes as well. They also help with crash-event reconstruction, as do the new radar units.

"Drug interdiction" is another emphasis area for the trooper on the road. Federal grants are used, whenever available, to provide additional drug-interdiction training to troopers and for additional equipment and funding for overtime hours. Grants also provide overtime funding so that increased numbers of troopers can patrol the state's highways during holidays and other high-traffic intervals.

The aim of all of this — the endless hours patrolling, the citations, warnings and emergency "assists," the added equipment and training — all of it is aimed at one goal: to make a highway-safety difference along every mile of Wyoming highway.