Sunday, March 6, 2016

Not Legal Advice: The 108 MPH Prius

I'm not a lawyer and I don't play one on TV. But this 108 MPH thing, I say you just have to own this. Now, I question the police's top speed assessment. Police regularly inflate things like this.
    Prius driver denies charges in 108 mph Falmouth pursuit
  • By George Brennan Follow @gpb227
    Posted Mar. 4, 2016 at 5:02 PM

    FALMOUTH — The 27-year-old driver of a Toyota Prius that allegedly reached a speed of 108 mph with police in pursuit and entered a ferry parking lot "like a bat out of hell" pleaded not guilty Friday in Falmouth District Court to several motor vehicle violations.
  • Benjamin R. Wolfe, of Spencer, who also has an address in Edgartown, was arraigned on charges of failing to stop for police, negligent operation of a motor vehicle, a marked lanes violation and speeding. He was released on his own recognizance.
  • At 7:19 p.m. Thursday, a state trooper tried to stop Wolfe's Prius on Route 28 southbound near Brick Kiln Road in Falmouth, according to a statement from the state police. The driver allegedly had tailgated and sped past the marked cruiser.
    The Prius reached a clocked speed of 108 mph in a 55 mph zone, according to court records. The trooper ended the pursuit but watched as the Prius crossed double yellow lines to pass vehicles in its path, records say.
  • After checking the vehicle's license plate and seeing that the owner lived in Edgartown, police suspected the driver was heading to the Steamship Authority terminal in Woods Hole to catch the ferry to Martha’s Vineyard, court records say.
    That hunch proved correct. The trooper who had first tried to stop Wolfe asked a parking attendant at the terminal if the car had been spotted and the man responded, "yeah, like a bat out of hell," according to records.
  • Wolfe is due back in court April 1 for a pretrial hearing.

So yeah. Stand up and own this. I mean, sure, double the speed limit is going to hurt. But if you were anywhere near that actual number, you're also, if not a Prius hero, a true Prius pioneer.*

*If you think this is me endorsing speeding or dangerous driving, grow up. I'm having some fun. No one was hurt in this case and it's funny. I mean, I had my third gen. up to 108 MPH once. I was in Montana (or maybe Idaho) on some heinously lonely stretch of major freeway in the midst of a twelve hour drive. Was I a hero? Hell no. Was it fun? Sort of. Would I do it again? Nope, I did it once and once was enough. My point here is that we Prius owners catch all kinds of grief from every corner because the Prius is universally perceived as the dorkmobile, the car that cannot go fast with drivers afraid to go fast and let me tell you, from experience, and from meeting hundreds, maybe thousands of Prius owners, going fast is not something we, as a group, are afraid of. And with that, since I've already broken one of Kip Adotta's immutable laws of comedy, I'll just stop here.