Shift changes will put more cars on the streets, good for commuters.
Drivers in the Santa Clarita Valley area will have an added
measure of protection – as well as more oversight in the violations department –
now that the Newhall office of the California Highway Patrol has gone to 12-12
Starting today, officers will be working 12 hour shifts, instead
of the traditional 8 ½ hours, adding overlap times when eyes on the road are
most critically needed.
Officer John Lutz said that the CHP conducted special needs
surveys throughout the state and offered stations the opportunity to adjust
their workloads to provide maximum safety.
“In this particular valley, some of the needs are an earlier
commute than some of the other areas, particularly up here in the Newhall Pass,” said CHP Officer John Lutz. “We’re more concerned
about the amount of overlap and making sure we have enough officers out on
patrol. This will actually increase the number of patrol vehicles out there.”
Officers will work one of three shifts: A watch starts at 5 a.m. and goes through 5:30 p.m.; B watch starts at 11
a.m. and ends at 11:30 p.m.
and C watch starts at 6:30 p.m. and
ends at 7 a.m. They will work four
days, then have three days off, then work three days and have four days off.
“They tested the system and got good feedback,” Lutz said. “Not
every area is doing this, it was the station’s choice. The overlap in personnel
will actually provide us with better coverage out on the street, where it’s