If you’ve ever wondered about the signs that say “Patrolled by Aircraft”, this is what they mean.

On the morning of July 4th, the Washington State Patrol was involved in a pursuit along I-5 and Highway 529 in Snohomish County.

Trooper Klayton Dresher first clocked a motorcyclist going around 82 miles per hour in a 60 mile per hour zone on I-5 northbound near the Boeing exit. When the driver failed to stop, Trooper Dresher called the WSP Aviation Unit who had a Cessna aircraft already monitoring the area. The aircraft quickly spotted the motorcyclist and followed him into a residential area in Everett. At one point during the 17 mile pursuit, the motorcyclist was clocked at 147 miles per hour!

After stopping at a house that wasn’t his, the motorist jumped out and attempted to hide behind a boat. However, thanks to the Cesena feeding location information to troopers on the ground, Trooper Christopher Houser arrived and was able to safely takedown the driver. The driver was arrested and booked without incident thanks to the collaboration between the WSP Aviation Unit, communications, and troopers on the ground; as well as assistance from the Everett Police Department.

Most importantly, we’re thankful nobody was hurt in this incident.

Speeding a serious traffic concern in Washington State. In 2016, Washington suffered 537 traffic-related deaths. According to the Washington Traffic Safety Commission, speed was involved in more than 28% of those fatal collisions. No loss of life is worth speeding.

Speeding creates a greater potential for loss of vehicle control, a reduced effectiveness of occupant protection, increases the stopping distance and the degree of potential crash severity, and ultimately it increases the risk of serious injury or death.

Last year, the Washington State Patrol contacted 380,296 drivers for speed violations. Troopers wrote 233,527 citations and issued 1,452 written warnings. More than 145,000 drivers also received verbal warnings.