Roses & Razzberries

By Terry Scruton, "Land Line Now" senior correspondent

ROSES to the group of people who gathered together to form a human chain and save the life of a trucker who might otherwise have perished during January's massive blizzard that struck the East Coast.

It happened on the Pennsylvania Turnpike on Jan. 22 when a truck lost control on the snowy highway and skidded into a precarious position on a steep incline beside the road. A picture, snapped by trucker Arlyn Satanek, shows about a dozen people linking arms to form a human chain and pull the driver out of his truck to safety.

The driver suffered only minor injuries and, needless to say, the photo went viral and with good reason. It's easy to get cynical writing RAZZBERRY all the time, but thankfully there are enough ROSES like this to maintain the balance and keep our faith in humanity alive.

ROSES to Jeremiah Lowe of Indianapolis who helped two drivers - including a truck driver - after a chain-reaction accident on Interstate 69 in Indiana.

According to local news reports, the incident happened back in January when a van slid on a patch of ice and hit a semi head-on. That crash caused a chain reaction crash involving another semi and four other cars. Lowe watched it all happen and immediately rushed out of his own car to help. Lowe grabbed a mirror that had broken off one of the trucks and started bashing in the windshield to get the driver out. He then helped several others until paramedics and police arrived at the scene and continued to help even after that.

Talk about putting the good in Good Samaritan.

RAZZBERRY to the FMCSA for continuing to try to make the medical certification process even more complicated than it already was. The latest misstep involves a plan that would allow certified medical examiners to collect information from drivers' primary caregivers about prescription meds the driver might be taking.

That might not seem like a big deal on the surface, but the potential for inconsistencies as doctors who have no personal relationship with the drivers try to evaluate their long-term medication usage is huge. Throw in all of the confusion over the new medical forms on top of that and you've got a recipe for some pretty big headaches for drivers, which could ultimately hurt their business.

Wonder what the FMCSA would prescribe for that? Probably more paperwork.

RAZZBERRY to Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo for her plan to pay for bridge repairs in her state with a truck-only toll. The plan itself is bad enough, but the way she's handled it has been even worse.

She first proposed the idea last May, but kept the entire state in the dark about the details. The official plan wasn't unveiled until almost February of this year and still centers around truck-only tolls.

The governor's office wasn't exactly helpful before the unveiling either. Between May and December State Representative Patricia Morgan and the Rhode Island Trucking Association put in requests for public documents seeking more information on the plan. What they got instead was a pile of documents that included a map of the state capitol of Providence from 1882.

We couldn't help wondering if the governor had changed her mind and decided to toll only horses and buggies instead. But the real plan - and the governor's response to it - smells like something a horse leaves behind.

RAZZBERRY to Mike Curry, an attorney in Mount Vernon, Ill., who recently went viral for all the wrong reasons. According to the Mount Vernon Register-News, Curry was stuck in traffic on Interstate 57 during a fatal accident in which Adam Conrad, a 22-year-old officer with the Marion County Sheriff's Department, was killed.

Upset about being stuck in traffic on the icy highway, Curry took to Facebook and unleashed a torrent of hateful, derogatory comments about the accident and about Conrad himself. Some of the things he posted were so vile we're not going to repeat them here. Suffice it to say the online backlash against Curry was swift and furious.

Curry subsequently apologized and resigned from his job at The Bankruptcy Clinic, but the damage was already done. Hopefully he's learned his lesson about the consequences of what you say online. LL