Law enforcement on the lookout for median "jumpers"

Law enforcement on the lookout for median "jumpers"

MIDLAND COUNTY, TX (KWES) - Driving down Interstate 20 going from Midland to Odessa, the marks of previous median jumpers can be easily seen.

Sergeant Oscar Villarreal of the Texas Department of Public Safety said, “The grass is worn down and the pavement is eroded at the edge where people have cut across because they are leaving this area.”

Villarreal said drivers jump the median when they just don't want to wait for traffic.

"People out of impatience are tired of sitting in traffic. They just decide to go ahead and find an exit and take it when there's not one," said Villarreal.

Villarreal added there's another reason why drivers ignore warning signs as well.

"Most of the time it's in a construction area and that's really the big problem because in a construction area you have workers present, roadwork, and traffic has already been detoured," said Villarreal.

With all that going, Villarreal said drivers can get surprised when another vehicle comes from out of nowhere.

"You see people traveling the service road at 55 mph aren't expecting cars to be leaving the interstate at 70 mph coming across to where they are traveling," said Villarreal.

If one day you are behind the wheel and want to get somewhere quickly and are thinking about jumping the median, there are consequences.

"It would be a Class-E Misdemeanor for the act itself," said Villarreal.

Officials said they make stops for median jumpers just as frequently as other traffic stops.

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