A social media post has blasted around the world much faster than the driver who inspired Kansas Highway Patrol trooper Ben Gardner to record the video.
“It’s called an acceleration lane, people,” Gardner says on the video, recorded Friday morning after he became irritated by a slow driver in front of him on an interstate entrance ramp.
Gardner said he immediately pulled his patrol vehicle to the shoulder of the road and recorded the 42-second video, which by Tuesday afternoon had more than 2.7 million views and more than 60,000 shares on Facebook.
Gardner – who won international recognition for his use of Twitter in 2017 — said the video did well on Twitter, where it was retweeted about 840 times, but it went viral when he posted it to the Kansas Highway Patrol Troop C Facebook page. The original post also has been shared by multiple media outlets across the nation, and those posts are accelerating nicely as well.
Speed up, folks
“It’s neat to go viral with stuff, but I can tell you when it does, you sort of hate it because your phone constantly pings and alerts,” he said. “Everybody’s commenting about it all the time.
It’s interesting and exciting, but my phone won’t stop. I hope I’m not missing something I really need to address.”
Gardner said he thinks there are various factors that explain the video’s popularity.
“It’s an officer telling people to speed up. So many times we’re talking about slowing down,” he said. “Also, it speaks to the desire the public has to see honesty. I think they like seeing someone telling it like it is.”
We can relate
In the video, Gardner tells drivers they need to be going the speed limit when they merge into traffic “because it totally jacks everybody up” if they aren’t.
In addition, the experience of entering interstate behind a slow driver is irritatingly common.
“No matter where it’s getting posted everybody wants to talk about a time they got brake-checked or were behind someone slow,” he said. “It’s relatable.”
Gardner said he plans to utilize video more in 2018.
“Things like that make me enjoy my day,” he said.
(c)2018 The Salina Journal (Salina, Kan.)
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