Safety Is the Tipping Point

by John Hawkins,
President and CEO, The Club

“Big rigs that tipped over on the freeway, killing the occupants of a car driving alongside”

“Other big rigs that tipped over or broke down on the Vincent Thomas Bridge, snarling traffic, endangering lives and ruining the taxpayer-funded pavement.”

These were just some of the stories recalled by Port Police Sgt. Glenn Twardy, Club Member, in explaining why his job exists – to check for violations in the traffic code for commercial vehicles in the incredibly important Port of Los Angeles, which generates billions of dollars in City revenue. (Most commercial trucks are law-abiding.)

Safety comes first. But keeping the freight moving is important, too. Sgt. Twardy invited Alive! to come down to observe an inspection training exercise, and we were delighted to say yes.

Our own Club Vice President of Business Development Arlene Herrero alerted us to this important story. Arlene was visiting with City Employees, heard about Sgt. Twardy and his Commercial Enforcement Unit, and realized no one had done a story on this important squad. A few months later, there we were, covering it. We love telling stories of City Employees providing a crucial service to City residents. (And boy did Arlene have a busy month – check out her other stories this month, including our regular Baker to Vegas comprehensive coverage, and Club Board Member LAFD Capt. Danny Wu’s annual St. Baldrick fundraiser. Good going, Arlene!)

LAPD Officer II Brian Thompson

And while the Alive! team was covering the training exercise, we ran into LAPD Officer II +3 Brian Thompson, 21 years of City service. Officer Thompson was the dean of the LAPD’s SES – the Specialized Enforcement Section, which is responsible for a myriad of motor-related responsibilities deemed critical by the LAPD, including determining commercial vehicle violations. That’s why the SES team was part of the training exercise. Anyway, back to Officer Thompson: He was ready to turn in all his gear the next day, as he was retiring after a distinguished City career. We’re glad we caught up with him to thank him for his exemplary service to the City. Thanks, Officer Thompson, and best wishes for a great retirement!

We all owe a debt to the Motor Officers of the Port Police, LAPD and other agencies for keeping our roads safe and our City infrastructure operating optimally. Thanks!

And as we head into June, make sure to follow the Club on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, email and YouTube to get the latest news on our great deals. It’s well worth your time!

— John