We All Have A Role In Protecting Emergency Support Technicians On The Road

September 23, 2021
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The scene is all too familiar with a vehicle broken down on the side of the road and traffic speeding past it.  An emergency support technician from a group like AAA stops to help get the vehicle started or towed.  Traffic fails to slow or move over.

This happens everyday on the roads of Connecticut and it can be deadly AND it is against the law.  Drivers who fail to move over when an emergency responder is helping a stranded vehicle can be fined, but worse it can lead to a deadly New Haven auto accident.

There have been fourteen deaths of tow drivers this year already and we still have a few months to go before the end of the calendar year.  One death is too many and fourteen is a major problem for our roads.  Even worse, drivers who were surveyed do not think it is their responsibility to move over when approaching a stranded vehicle and an emergency support technician.  In fact, 42% of respondents to a recent survey did not think there was anything wrong with staying in the lane that is closest to the broken down vehicle.  These respondents also did not believe there was a need to slow their speed down.

In a survey that AAA conducted to better understand the behaviors of drivers, nearly 1/4 of all respondents said that they were not aware of their states “Move Over” laws.  Even when respondents to the survey reported knowing the law existed 15% reported that they did not understand the real danger presented by not following the law and what a potential safety risk it could be for those responding to stranded vehicles.

The Connecticut “Move Over” law requires that if there is one or more emergency vehicle in the breakdown lane or shoulder of the road, the passing vehicle should slow down to below the speed limit and when safely able to do so should move a lane over so as to not endanger the emergency responders.  If they fail to do so they may be risking a New Haven auto accident and a fine.

Emergency support technicians put themselves in harms way every day.  If you are injured when you are working as the result of a car accident, contact our office and one of our attorneys will review your case and work with you to protect your long-term interests.