Highway Patrol seeks senior volunteers | SierraSun.com

Highway Patrol seeks senior volunteers

Jenny Goldsmith/Sierra SunBob McDonald operates the commercial vehicle scales at the California Highway Patrol inspection station on Interstate 80. The facility is asking for senior volunteers to assist inspection specialists.

The California Highway Patrol wants to recruit a cadre of senior volunteers to assist inspection specialists at the Interstate 80 commercial vehicle station in Truckee.

While seniors have volunteered for similar law enforcement programs statewide, this would be the first highway inspection facility to employ senior volunteers in California, said program coordinator Josh McDonald.

“It’s really groundbreaking,” CHP Officer McDonald said. “Volunteers would not only benefit the CHP, but the community as well.”

Responsibilities would include data entry, staffing the truck scales, handling phone calls, administrative tasks and assisting with commercial vehicle inspections, McDonald said.

Benefits would include driver training, first aid practice, and an understanding of the judicial system. Volunteers would receive a Highway Patrol uniform and badge, and may have opportunities to go on ride-alongs with peace officers, he said.

“There are no credentials required,” McDonald said. “Although they must be healthy enough to perform the assigned tasks.”

With more than 50,000 trucks rolling through the station every month, McDonald said the facility is extremely short-staffed.

“We’re currently short 50 percent on clerical positions,” he said. “Having the extra help would allow us to free up officers and specialists for other important work.”

Interested seniors would have to pass a background check, and must not have any felony convictions on their record. Further, they must be at least 55 years old to qualify for the program, McDonald said.

“This is a great opportunity for someone looking to contribute to society, and learn something new at the same time,” McDonald said. “The work directly relates to the safety of California citizens.”

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