Watch out for wet leaves

Submitted by:
Doug Wyllie, PoliceOne Editor in Chief


During IACP last week, I got into a lengthy hallway discussion with a couple of chiefs from a Midwestern state that touched on about a dozen different officer-safety topics.
In coming weeks I’ll post some of the thoughts we’d shared in that impromptu three-man confab, but today I want to focus on something today that is directly related to another tip I’d posted in this space not too long ago — A sobering tip about driving in weather.

When one of them mentioned how the autumn leaves are particularly spectacular ‘back home’ I immediately replied, “Tell your officers to be careful.”

Like my two newfound friends from the Midwest, police officers in many places in our nation are presently enjoying the full flush of the autumn season, and consequently, there are leaves scattered about on roads, sidewalks, and people’s front porches. Simultaneously, morning dew continues to form (frost is developing overnight in the north and higher elevations throughout the country).

Wet leaves are in some cases even more slippery and dangerous than ice. Be aware of this when you’re driving, walking, running, or anything else. The rubber on your tires and on the soles of your shoes will most definitely behave differently when in contact with those wet leaves.

We talk about safely operating in snow and ice all the time, but leaves can be just as dangerous — more so in cases where it hasn’t rained or snowed lately, leading to a false sense that you’re in “dry conditions.” 

Related Tip:
A sobering reminder about driving 'in weather'
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Doug Wyllie is Editor in Chief of PoliceOne, responsible for setting the editorial direction of the website and managing the planned editorial features by our roster of expert writers. An award-winning columnist — he is the 2014 Western Publishing Association "Maggie Award" winner in the category of Best Regularly Featured Digital Edition Column — Doug has authored more than 900 feature articles and tactical tips on a wide range of topics and trends that affect the law enforcement community.

On a daily basis, Doug is in close personal contact with some of the top subject-matter experts in law enforcement, regularly tapping into the world-class knowledge of officers and trainers from around the United States, and working to help spread that information and insight to the hundreds of thousands of officers who visit PoliceOne every month.

Doug is a member of International Law Enforcement Educators and Trainers Association (ILEETA), an Associate Member of the California Peace Officers' Association (CPOA), and a member of the Public Safety Writers Association (PSWA).

Even in his "spare" time, he is active in his support for the law enforcement community, contributing his time and talents toward police-related charitable events as well as participating in force-on-force training, search-and-rescue training, and other scenario-based training designed to prepare cops for the fight they face every day on the street.

Contact Doug Wyllie

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