The number of Colorado state troopers injured in accidents involving careless or impaired drivers has been growing at an alarming rate over the last couple of years.
State Patrol says an accident Friday which injured a trooper was more of the same.
The crash happened shortly before 8 a.m. in Castle Rock. State Patrol says the trooper was stopped at a red light when a Hummer smashed into the back of his patrol car. The rear of the patrol vehicle was left with significant damage, and the trooper sustained minor injuries. No one in the Hummer--which included two children--were hurt.
Sister station KCNC says driver Jeffrey Estrada told them he dropped his phone just before the crash. His 13-year-old daughter concurred.
“My dad had his phone in his lap and it dropped on the floor and he went to go pick it up. There’s was a stop light and he didn’t see it and then all of a sudden we hit the car,” Jersey told KCNC. She added that her father felt terrible about what happened.
”He almost started crying because he felt really bad he got us into this mess because we could have gone to the hospital,” she said.
In less than two months, starting late last year through the beginning of February, there were at least six crashes involving an on-duty trooper being injured or a patrol vehicle struck by careless driving. Despite State Patrol's efforts to increase awareness to the issue since then, more incidents throughout the state have been reported.
The trooper was released from the hospital on the day as the accident. Estrada was cited for careless driving.