I was driving the other day behind two police cars and they both drove right by someone who had obviously just run a red light — why didn't at least one of them do something about it?

Q: I was driving the other day behind two police cars and they both drove right by someone who had obviously just run a red light! Why didn't at least one of them do something about it?

A: Sometimes it seems that you can drive around for hours on a shift and not see any blatant violation like you describe. Get dispatched to a call and then everyone seems to forget how to drive.

I suspect you were behind two officers that were responding to a call that didn't allow for stops to write a traffic ticket. Often officers respond to calls without lights and sirens activated but still need to get there without delay.

You always have to weigh the options. Is it worth crossing two busy lanes of traffic to catch that speeder? Should we make the person who just had their house burglarized wait while we write a ticket to the person that ran the light? Unfortunately for all of us there will always be plenty of people willing to take their chances and break traffic laws. There will be another chance to issue that citation.

Q: What are the most common traffic offenses that officers give citations for?

A: I asked our traffic officer Steve Maclennan who said speeding was the most common violation he cites for. We seem to have the most trouble with speeding on North Main Street near Maple, East Hersey Street between Mountain Avenue and Oak Street and on East Main Street between Walker Avenue and Mountain Avenue. You'll find it's not uncommon to see a patrol vehicle monitoring traffic in these areas.

Send your questions to Ask-Apd@ashland.or.us