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Track Junkie
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2,462 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, looks like a very...very bad month to try and ride the dragon. Killboy posted up some info from this weekends events.

www.killboy.com
Tennessee Declares War on Tourism

TNHP is conducting saturation enforcement every weekend on the 9 mile section of Hwy 129 for the rest of this month. Utilizing at least 10 patrol cars and/or bikes a day, and scrutinizing anyone and anything that legally drives by them. They will even pull you over without just cause, and inspect your vehicle then release you back onto the roadway for the next LEO around the corner to do it all over again.


If you value your freedom to ride or drive where you want to in this country without harassment, I urge everyone to SPEAK UP! If you EVER plan to visit Deals Gap, SPEAK UP! Get on the forums, rally the troops, and don't let them walk over us like this. And if you think none of this applies to you, because you are in a different "group", think again. Next time, they could target your group.


This treatment is NOT justified, as there had been no major incidents or accidents prior to their arrival, but since then we have had the worst triple fatality incident in the history of the Gap, with 3 deaths within 24 hours, the worst big rig accident in recent history, closing the road for 2 days and costing over $100,000 to clean up, and the most damage to the road I have ever seen, as a result of the big rig accident. This whole operation has been a fiasco from the very beginning, and done nothing positive for the enthusiasts of the area, the local businesses, or the image of the state of Tennessee.


For now, if you want to ride or drive and enjoy the roads, stick to North Carolina. If you want to be treated like a criminal, visit TN.


Share your encounters with the law by leaving comments here, or on Tail of the Dragon.com, and if anyone has any video or audio evidence of harassment, send it our way as well. We'll present it all to the politician that initiated all of this, TN Governer Phil Bredesen.


A few things you can do to minimize your chances of getting ticketed:

Slow down...especially on your first run through. That's just a good practice anyway to avoid running up on any road hazards or accidents, but especially now that the area is being heavily patrolled.


Make sure the license plate is mounted at the back of the bike, straight and level.

Use a higher gear! I know your R6 sounds wicked awesome at 17,000 rpm, but right now is not the time. They can hear you coming from 2 miles out, and it gets some of those guys riled up...even though you're in first gear going 25mph.


Even these things will not guarantee you won't get pulled over. Plan to be stopped if you come to the area mid-day for the month of August.



Posted on the Tail Of the Dragon website...

http://tailofthedragon.com/dragon_SHUTDOWN.html
TENNESSEE SHUT-DOWN OF US 129

Well, the Late Great State of Tennessee has answered our open letter. Not in words but in actions. On Friday the third and Saturday the fourth of August there were some 14 Tennessee Highway Patrol vehicles and a couple of Blount County Sheriffs cars blatantly harassing both motorcycles and cars on the Dragon. They promise to be here for the next month. Talk about showing your ignorance.

These actions prove Tennessee does not welcome visitors to this area. One Trooper pulled me over for no reason. I was on my motorcycle following three cars at the posted 30 mph speed limit and the Trooper signaled me to pull over onto the gravel. He gave my bike a once over and then signaled me to pull back out. Why did he let the cars pass and then stop me?

We heard worse stories. An older female vacationer from Minnesota in an SUV was pulled over in one of the straights and ticketed for 45 in a 30. She insisted she was not going that fast. A local Blount County family was showing their friend from out of state the Dragon. He was ticketed for 40 in a 30. A Georgia rider was pulled over and threatened with arrest when the Trooper insisted that he had crossed the double yellow at 30 mph. He was then harassed for having his face shield up even though he was wearing glasses. The Trooper said the rider HAD TO PROVE they were shatter proof. We heard of a number of non-DOT helmet tickets and saw many rider helmets being inspected. Traffic crept over the Dragon at 20 mph all day. Get a life Tennessee. Many visitors who were staying in Tennessee told us they would not return or spend any money in that state.

While these 14 Troopers were here:


Friday 11 am, Meigs TN, 45 miles from the Dragon - Two pick-ups collide, one driver dead
Saturday Morning, Bledsoe TN, 65 miles west of the Dragon – A motorcyclist was killed in a one vehicle accident.
Bottom line ….. Tennessee doesn’t want your tourism dollar. Answer ….. bring it to North Carolina. We have many roads that rival the Dragon. US 129 all the way through Robbinsville to US 19/74 has some great sections. The Hellbender NC28 is a real challenge. Continue to the east of US 19/74 on NC28 and get a real thrill. And all of these roads have a 55 mph speed limit, not a ridiculous 30 mph like the Dragon.

Run the Cherohala Skyway. The speed limit is 45 in North Carolina, but that’s fast enough to get a thrill. In Tennessee the limit drops to 40 mph even though the road is easier. Ride the NC side.

You’ll have to obey the law in North Carolina, but there won’t be a storm trooper at every turn.

Now tell the Governor of Tennessee, other state officials, and Blount County Commissioners what you think. Let’s be LOUD & PROUD.
 

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FZ6 Corner Carver
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12,159 Posts
Ivan_markII said:
When I treat the street as a racetrack I just pretend the cops are cornerworkers giving me the meatball.
:eek:nfloor dude i havent laughed that hard in a while... :lao but its not like you couldnt see it coming... after the string of deaths from riders up there already this year... they had to do something the public pretty much twisted their arm to enforce the laws and to try and keep motorists safe...
 

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Yes I'm a FIB
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2,139 Posts
Figures........
We ALL knew this was going to happen sooner or later.
 

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Registered
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FZ6 Dude said:
after the string of deaths from riders up there already this year... they had to do something the public pretty much twisted their arm to enforce the laws and to try and keep motorists safe...
Actually the first death was a low side that was not speed related. The next 2 deaths were by a trike hitting a boat, I am not sure of the circunstances there.

I am sure that no one contacted the police asking for their "protection." They are doing this out of the generocity of their hearts, the need to protect us from ourselves, and the need to fatten their wallets:neener . I would boycott the tennessee sid eif it would do any good but there is nothing to spend your money on that side of the gap anyway.

You would think a news agency could put a car or motorcycle with hidden cameras on it to show the police harrasment.:bitchslap
 

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KH, Rest In Peace Brother
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20,852 Posts
Several trips there and I have only seen people pulled over on the N.C. side. The depts. in that area do this at least once a year and I am surprised they waited this far into the season. There might not be a lot of fatalaties there this season but I didn't see where the total number of wrecks this year have been posted up. BTW, Tenn. State Troopers do not have to have probable cause to pull anyone over like most cops, they can pull people just for a driver's license inspection.
 

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KH, Rest In Peace Brother
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20,852 Posts
chaos14 said:
horse shit if you ask me, thanks for adding more validity to the ftp threads.(not you officer but the cops working the dragon


I can understand saturation details but sometimes they take it to an extreme. When Tenn. first started the "click it or ticket" program, they were paying troopers over time to do nothing but write seat belt tickets.
 

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UMMM BEER!!!!
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2,775 Posts
OFFICER737 said:
I can understand saturation details but sometimes they take it to an extreme. When Tenn. first started the "click it or ticket" program, they were paying troopers over time to do nothing but write seat belt tickets.
Damn, guess thats one way to crack down on no seatbelt.
 

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I'm Quiet
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118 Posts
I rode the Dragon on the 4th. I left the hotel at 7:30 - 8:00,and the first bike I see is some guy fly by me in a corner going the opposite direction, knee inches from the pavement leg over the centerline. I assume the unmarked police car that flew by a turn or two later was chasing him. Altogether I'd say there were about 5-6 guys driving just like him the first hour or two until all the troopers got there. I rode the dragon five times and never got pulled over, and I didn't see them pulling every bike over either. I don't agree with what TN is doing, but if what I saw is a everyday occurence then I completely understand. You can't expect them to do nothing, to just sit back and let people treat that road like a racetrack.
 

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Knuckle Dragger
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187 Posts
OFFICER737 said:
Several trips there and I have only seen people pulled over on the N.C. side. The depts. in that area do this at least once a year and I am surprised they waited this far into the season. There might not be a lot of fatalaties there this season but I didn't see where the total number of wrecks this year have been posted up. BTW, Tenn. State Troopers do not have to have probable cause to pull anyone over like most cops, they can pull people just for a driver's license inspection.
That's a bit concerning.
Mind you, I'm not the 18-year-old "F the cops!" punk kid....I'm quite the opposite. However, something smacks me as wrong with the pulling vehicles over and searching for some infraction. Hey, If I'm going 1 MPH over the limit, it's BS but it's justified. But pulling folks over and looking for infractions....that's sounds a little like it's treading on constitutional rights of search and seizure. Something about free and unfettered passage on public roadways.
With that said, If you pulled me over and I asked why I was pulled over, and your answer was that you just want to inspect my vehicle, may I point out my current inspection decal and drive away? (sort of like the Law & Order equivalent of asking "Am I under arrest?. No? Good day gentlemen.")

Officer737, could you please post one of your many eloquent explanations to the above...
Please feel free to
 

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Mmelmann said:
...and I was planning on finally going to the dragon. Great news.
Don't ride the Dragon on Friday afternoon or Saturday. As a rule, I'll do one run EARLY on Saturday morning, then go off elsewhere. There are so many other good roads you can ride besides the Dragon in the area, so don't let this discourage you.

I personally think this sort of activity isn't unexpected. When I see guys up there with their bikes 'track ready' sporting DOT race tires you know the police are eventually going to show up.
 

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the joke is in your hand
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8,603 Posts
north carolina is just as bad. you get caught doing 15 over there, its mandatory court. unless you get a lawyer to show up for you.

I have to go back on the 20th because I thought the speed limit on the cherahola was 55 not 45.

the cop also asked us if we were passing over the double yellow. I said I didn't but my buddy didn't out right deny it so he got a ticket for it. I guess law is they dont have to see you do it now. they just ask if you ever broken a law before and get you for it now.
 

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Track Junkie
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2,462 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I was there about 2 or 3 years ago when they were doing a crackdown. All they had was at the end of the dragon on the TN side, a huge camp of sorts setup. Several THP cars, a helo, and a trailer. They would catch people speeding off the dragon, and would send a few cars through the dragon to catch speeders, or slow people down. This years crackdown is just plain silly. Pulling people over that arent doing anything wrong? Thats not going to fix the problem. Maybe they should think of putting a toll on the road? Pay the toll, use the road for the day?
 
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