OHP Trooper Speaks Out After His Close Call With An Alleged Drunk Driver At A Construction Zone

Wednesday, August 25th 2021, 4:53 pm
By: Brittany Toolis

About 10 days ago, an Oklahoma Highway Patrol trooper had a close call when an alleged drunk driver hit him while on patrol. 

Trooper Eric Foster's cruiser was hit from behind while he was sitting on the side of the Interstate 40 and Interstate 44 interchange. Foster said his mangled squad car shows the risk every law enforcement officer takes when they step on duty.

"This is the violence that we see and this wasn't violence just because of happenstance. This was someone who chose to drive intoxicated," Foster said.

The moment a suspected intoxicated driver slams into Foster's squad car, Foster was parked at a construction zone entrance.

The crash sent the trooper's vehicle into a guard wall, and the other driver's vehicle into the middle of the roadway.

"The impact was so violent that the radio that's mounted on my belt came off and was in the car somewhere, so I had no communication devices," said Foster. "He was obviously intoxicated, admitted to a lot of different intoxicants just hours prior."

Foster walked away with minor injuries.

"It wasn't fatal. It could have been fatal. I've worked crashes just like this, with less damage where I've seen fatalities," Foster said.

Foster said he's thankful his squad car was all the driver hit.

"Immediately over that hill, there was a road crew on the road working behind lights," Foster said. "(That) could have possibly killed seven, 10 people very easily. There was nothing there between them and me."

Foster is on light duty for the next few weeks but said if asked, he'd take shift at a construction zone again.

"Right now, I would answer yes. When we sit there, we know that it the peril of it," Foster said.

The driver is facing several complaints including driving under the influence, causing personal injury. The driver was also on probation at the time of the crash.