Dallas Police Says It's Only Kind of to Blame for Yesterday's LBJ Traffic Nightmare

Categories: News

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First off, we'd like to make a correction. Yesterday's report that the Trafficpocalypse was upon us was premature. Yesterday's bizarre configuration of vehicles stuck on LBJ did not augur a world-ending traffic jam. Commutes this morning were regular terrible, not apocalyptic.

What actually happened was that at least seven cars crashed into one another on eastbound I-635 near Audelia Road. (Police haven't provided a cause, but a witness told Unfair Park it was the fault of an erratic driver.) Traffic immediately backed way up, prompting some drivers near the front of the line to make a U-turn and begin navigating the wrong way down the freeway.

See also: LBJ Has Been Taken By the Trafficpocalypse

Some drivers claimed that police told them to turn around. Not so, Dallas PD said in a statement this afternoon.

They were just "apparently unwilling to wait until the collisions could be cleared." (Translation: They were impatient jerks.)

"Adding to the difficulties," police said, "one well-intentioned officer appears to have directed some motorists up a closed ramp to try and get them off the freeway with no success.

"In all, 14 Dallas police squads were assigned to assist with the collision investigation and resultant traffic tie up. Officers worked to clear the collision scenes as soon as possible and we regret that because of the location of the collisions, limited access to alternate routes and directions to a closed ramp by our officer, the problem was not cleared sooner."

DPD does not identify the "well-intentioned officer," which is probably for the best. No telling when the accumulated road rage will finally dissipate.

Send your story tips to the author, Eric Nicholson.

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ScottsMerkin topcommenter

I thought the sheriff's office was responsible for clearing accidents on the interstates now, for this exact reason.  DPD can never clear a wreck quickly


DPD's seeming indifference to rapid accident clearance has been a problem for years. Several times each week, an accident will back up traffic for miles, while DPD officers leisurely go about.... Doing very little, appearing to wait... For something. Meanwhile, thousands of vehicles are backed up for what equates to thousands upon thousands of man-hours.

Other cities appear to manage accident clearance far more quickly.


I'm sorry, Eric. 2 hours to open up even 1 lane does NOT mean impatient jerks. It means incompetent donut munchers couldn't do their jobs.

What they need is a professional accident team to be disatched to film and measure FAST. And then release the scene. Not diddle and gab.


So 14 squads were assigned to the accident. How many supervisors were there? I can understand one officer trying to help out and making mistakes, but can't fathom the failure in supervision out there. Where was the command and control?


If we had solar powered water taxis, this would not be an issue.  I'm just sayin...


I was car #2 in a five-car pileup on the Ventura Freeway when a young girl with two weeks on her license suddenly lost control for no discernible reason. It took about 15 minutes to clear, tops. Of course, the accident report I received stated "excessive speed on part of vehicles #1 and/or #2"

We were below the limit in the second slow lane, so obviously, accident investigation was not much of a priority.

RTGolden1 topcommenter

@ozonelarryb None of the available professional accident teams were MWOB certified.

RTGolden1 topcommenter

@clearingone It was probably a case of too many supervisors, very few of which had any grasp of the key ingredient to command and control: communication.  That's usually how one 'un-named subordinate' finds himself at the bottom of turd mountain.

ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul topcommenter


Can't ... resist ...

"Ventura Highway in the sunshine
Where the days are longer
The nights are stronger than moonshine
You're gonna go I know"

-- America; Ventura Highway

everlastingphelps topcommenter

@ruddski  "Leads?  Yeah, they've got two more detectives working on the case!  They've got us working in shifts!"

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