Viewpoints

Wed
28
Jun

Ask a Trooper

Question: I was told that the speeding fine in a construction zone had gone up recently. Could you also explain the Zipper Merge for merging into construction zones in Minnesota?
Answer: With a recent area work zone crash that left two people injured, this is a great time to talk about work zone safety.
During the spring and summer months, construction season is in full swing in Minnesota and motorists risk their lives and the lives of others by not slowing down and paying attention.
• In the past five years (2011 – 2015), 39 people have died and more than 3,700 people injured in work zone traffic crashes.
• In 2015, 10 people died in work zone traffic crashes, the most since 2010 (12).
Safety Tips:
• When driving in a construction zone, slow down. Work zone fines for speeding are more than $300.

If you would like to read more, subscribe to the Maple Lake Messenger today!

Wed
28
Jun

Brute's Bleat June 28, 2017

Tracks often tell a story and for Laverne Anderson, who lives north of South Haven, the tracks were from a black bear that made its presence known at his residence last week. At first he thought a raccoon had knocked over a bird feeder, but when he came across the tracks he decided a bear was the culprit. The bird feeder was too substantial to be damaged by a small animal like a raccoon, he commented. So if there’s a moral to that story, it is to be aware and to keep an eye out for a black bear on the move!
* * *

Wed
14
Jun

Ask a Trooper

Question: I was skating the other day and wondered about how skaters/rollerbladers should behave on the roads. I am familiar with bike laws--a bicycle is treated like any other vehicle on the road with a few exceptions. What about inline skates? Especially if I'm training, skating pretty fast and consistently with the flow of traffic?
Do I act like a bicycle? Or like a pedestrian go on the other side of the road? Or just stay off the road altogether and try to stick to the sidewalk or paved paths?
Answer: With the summer months beginning, there has been an increase in rollerbladers out sharing the roads with motorists.
When on skates, you are subject to the same obligations as a bicyclist or a driver of an automobile and you must obey all traffic laws.
• Skaters may skate on all Minnesota roads, except where restricted.
• Skaters should skate on the road, and must ride in the same direction as traffic.

Wed
14
Jun

Brute’s Bleat

What more can a person ask for in a fishing trip to Lake of the Woods, via the Northwest Angle. We, the seven of us, had great weather (no long johns this year), good fishing and your’s truly even managed to win two games of 31 out of eight. One against former Maple Lake banker, George Palmer, and the other against David Robbins, also a two-game winner.
Wayne Rustad won a big one against Muller who was in a slump all of the trip and came home empty-handed. Palmer and David Thompson each had a win and Charles Brutlag, like Muller, came up skunked.

Wed
07
Jun

Ask a Trooper

Question: A friend of mine recently saw two people riding their horses at night near a bar. We suspect they were trying to avoid a DWI. Can you get a DWI while riding a horse? What about a bicycle?
Answer: In Minnesota, it is a crime for any person to drive, operate, or be in physical control of any motor vehicle, within this state or on any boundary water of this state when:
• The person is under the influence of alcohol.
• The person is under the influence of a controlled substance.
• The person is knowingly under the influence of a hazardous substance.
• The person is under the influence of a combination of any two or more of the above elements.
• The person's alcohol concentration at the time, or as measured within two hours of the time, of driving, operating, or being in physical control of the motor vehicle is 0.08 or more.

Wed
07
Jun

The Weekly View


Nick Pawlenty with a 19-inch largemouth bass. (Photo by Casey Stanard)

Hello all, Harold has again left me in charge of his column as he is on a fishing trip with family. He does this every year, and always makes for a good story after he comes back. I hope he comes back with some big fish and even bigger stories.
The last time I was out fishing was the Memorial Day weekend, where myself and some extended family enjoyed some time off together. We were up at Big Sauk Lake, located in Sauk Centre, and the weekend was pretty decent for fishing. Not a lot of walleyes were caught, but we definitely caught a variety of fish. I know when the weather is getting nice because the northerns are very active and probably the most caught fish over that weekend. A buddy and neighbor on the lake, Jim Bieniek, caught his first couple of northerns for the first time ever in his life. Jim and myself went out in a little 14-footer just big enough for both of us.

Wed
31
May

Ask a Trooper

Question: I see vehicles go by with extended carriers attached to their hitch with several full gas cans. We discuss what could happen if a driver was not paying attention and ran into one such vehicle. How safe can this be? Are there any laws in place that makes this unlawful?
Answer: There is no law against having fuel containers on an extended carrier for non-commercial type vehicles. With that being said, I agree with you that it could be a very dangerous situation if a crash would occur.
I’ve investigated and witnessed vehicle fires and they tend to burn very fast when ignited by an outside source, electrical problem or engine fire. I have seen rear-end collisions where the fuel tank was ruptured and gasoline was dispersed at the scene, making it a very dangerous situation. Newer vehicles are designed to keep the fuel from leaking out of the gas tank in the event of a crash by placing the tank in the safest location possible on the vehicle.

Wed
31
May

Brute’s Bleat

Sunfish fishing took a turn for the better Wednesday of last week when the weather started to cooperate for George Palmer and myself. We chose Lake Sylvia mostly because we wanted to find some relatively quiet water and also to check on the sunfish spawn. We found a couple of fairly quiet bays, but no spawning sunfish. Palmer nailed several with his fly rod, but a spinning rod and reel was a better choice. He caught two huge sunfish and we had a fair number of medium-sized keepers which made for a fun afternoon. Wax worms seemed to be the bait of choice and plastic also worked, too. We both caught some smaller large mouth bass and a couple of rock bass, a fish known for a brief fight before giving up. We were casting toward shore most of the time and had to be careful not to toss our lures into limbs and bushes. One of Palmer’s casts was a wee bit too strong and his line was hung up on some twigs. The bait fell into the water and was immediately snapped up by a sunfish.

Wed
24
May

Ask a Trooper

Question: I was told that the Minnesota State Patrol is involved in teaching a school patrol camp in the summer. Can you provide me with some information about it?
Answer: Legionville is a summer camp where school patrol students are taught the fundamentals of school patrol, school bus safety, bicycle and pedestrian safety. It is located just north of Brainerd, and is operated by the American Legion Club, using State Patrol troopers as instructors. I will be one of the instructors again this year.
Students who will be 10 years old before September 1st and not older than 13 years will be accepted. Exceptions to this restriction can be made but must be cleared in advance through the American Legion. Legionville is currently taking applications.

If you would like to read more, subscribe to the Maple Lake Messenger today!

Wed
24
May

Brute’s Bleat

This 22-inch walleye brought a smile to my brother, Marlin’s, face Sunday evening when the three Brutlag brothers, Marlin, Charles and myself, began the 2017 season. Besides having the largest fish, he also caught the first walleye, good for a $1 from Charles and myself. To add insult to injury he caught the first fish again Monday morning for another $2. We kept four walleyes Sunday evening and another two Monday before they shut off when the wind settled in the east. I brought up the rear with only one walleye, but it was a good opener. We woke up to rain on Tuesday and didn’t go out.
Daryl Hennen said his group of Hennens fished Lake Vermilion where they found the walleyes hungry even though it was cold and windy in the north country on Saturday. He said the lake was like glass Monday morning and no rain which was a great way to wind up their opener.

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