The Minutemen: Highway Helpers Share Dangers, Tips for Drivers

We sat down with a group of Minutemen to ask them about the biggest dangers they face and how drivers can create a safer experience on the highways.

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“We had a pedestrian walking around the expressway. He just started running back and forth. Once he realized he wasn’t getting away, he started tearing his pants off. He was running across the highway. We helped state troopers tackle the guy and get him on the ground.” --Christian Martinez, minutemen driver
“Somebody’s coming down and they lost control. I saw them coming ready to hit my truck so I hopped over the wall. Sure enough, the lady slammed into the back of my truck and shot across all the lanes to the right shoulder." -- Rudolph Dehoyos, minutemen supervisor
n“They could be in a lane of traffic trying to get a stall out of the lane and you have this person who’s not paying any attention because they’re texting, looking down at their phone, they could crash into them.” -- Jay Seifried, minutemen supervisor
n“We get hit a lot. There’s a lot of people who are distracted, not paying attention or just want to get around as fast as they can. They do unsafe stuff just to get around and beat traffic so that way they’re not in it.” --Christian Martinez, minutemen driver
n“I’ve been inches away from getting hit because somebody’s either looking at their phone or just trying to get around us.” --Christian Martinez, minutemen driver
n“I looked up and there was a car just coming right at me. You heard the tires lock up and it just slid. I had to dive under the semi or I would have been hit.” --Christian Martinez, minutemen driver
“One driver had a gun pulled on him. We had a driver kidnapped at gunpoint one time, years back.” --Christian Martinez, minutemen driver
“Just a handshake or a thank you.” --Jerry Lockhart, minutemen driver
n“Write a letter to the state of Illinois.” --Jay Seifried, minutemen supervisor
“They’re actually living on the shoulder. They’re right there, inches from the pavement.” --Jerry Lockhart, minutemen driver
“It would cause more gridlock. We take everything off the interstate. That way it’s not out there anymore. People don’t slow down to look at it, take pictures of it.” -- Minutemen Supervisor Rudoph Dehoyos
“They don’t know who I am, where I’m coming from. They believe, 'Oh, AAA sent you so quickly. No, not quite.” -- Minutemen driver Jerry Lockhart
“Usually, when we’re the first people on the scene, it’s kind of dangerous for us because we don’t know if the guy is going to start shooting at us.” -- Christian Martinez, minutemen driver
n“You don’t know if they’re going to be shooting at you or if it’s still an active shooting or whatever. But you still have to shut down the highway so the state police can get in there and do their job.” --Jay Seifried, minutemen supervisor
n“The state looks out for us. They give us (bullet proof) vests now." --Jerry Lockhart, minutemen driver
“Those are the ones that bother you, is when you see the little children hurt.” --Jay Seifried, minutemen supervisor
n“The family’s doing whatever they’re supposed to do, normal. And then they get hit by a drunk driver. So yeah, it is tough.” --Jerry Lockhart, minutemen driver
“Yield to the emergency lights. You’re supposed to yield to the right when we’re coming and when we’re on scene we would like them to give us a wide birth.” --Jerry Lockhart, minutemen driver
n“Reduce speeds in inclement weather. Pay more attention to what’s going on.” --Rudolph Dehoyos, minutemen supervisor
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