Roman: Don’t stop in the middle of traffic to have an argument


A few weeks ago I was driving down the street when I came upon a car that was blocking the right lane with no lights on.

It was a dark-colored car and definitely a traffic hazard since it didn’t have any lights on. It was also parked on a curved portion of the road, which was not a good place for any car. It was a good thing I was paying attention or I could’ve hit the car.

I slowed to a stop and activated my light bar. I walked up and saw a man in his 20s, sitting in the driver seat with the engine off. His head was turned to the right and he didn’t see me until I shined my light into the car. After the light came on, he turned his head and looked at me with an annoyed look on his face like I was bothering him.

“Can you lower your window?” I asked.

He nodded and put the key in the ignition. After he lowered the window I asked, “Did your car break down?”

He pointed to the woman in the passenger seat and said, “We’re having an argument.”

With a look of disbelief I said, “You’re blocking a lane with your lights off. Why are you arguing here?”

“She got out of the car when I stopped.”

I pointed to the street and said, “You just can’t block a lane  and turn your lights off. Plus, the sign says, ‘No Stopping Anytime.’”

“I had to pick her up,” he replied.

After I spoke with him I could tell he was more concerned with his personal life than the safety of all the cars around him.

Apparently, common sense wasn’t his strong point either. I walked back to my car and wrote him a ticket. After I was done I went back to the driver and explained to him how dangerous his actions were. I also told him I understood about the argument, but the middle of the street was not the place to have it. With an unhappy look he took his ticket and drove off.

I walked back to my car knowing he was going to make the blog for sure.

You just can’t make this stuff up.

Editor’s Note: John Roman is a traffic officer for an Orange County police agency who writes a blog, Badge 415 ( His posts focus on the human side of police work and safety tips. Roman, a cop for more thsn 20 years, has handled more than 5,000 accidents as a collision investigator. shares some of his columns.