From Nov. 13-17, the State Highway Patrol will join forces with first responders throughout the nation in recognition of Crash Responder Safety Week (CRSW). This Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)-sponsored initiative serves to highlight the importance of education and awareness surrounding safe driving behavior while responders are working on the roadside.
SHP members investigate roadway crashes daily with fellow emergency responders, including firefighters, emergency medical services, law enforcement partners, towing & recovery, public works and safety service patrols. Collectively, these traffic incident responders assist road users in need, applying well-rehearsed procedures to provide emergency traffic control and quickly clear incidents from roadways.
“Troopers of the State Highway Patrol along with our courageous partners in public safety and emergency services routinely work just inches away from fast-moving traffic while performing their duties on the roadside,” said Colonel Freddy L. Johnson Jr., commander of the State Highway Patrol. “This campaign serves to remind drivers of the risks that our emergency responders take every day and emphasize the need for every vehicle that passes by a traffic incident to please slow down, move over and stay alert.”
Using the hashtag #CRSW, the State Highway Patrol will promote awareness of North Carolina’s Move Over Law on its social media platforms during CRSW. Troopers statewide will also conduct rigorous enforcement of North Carolina’s Move Over law during the campaign.
The State Highway Patrol along with other participating agencies remind all road users to, “Protect those who protect you.” NC General Statute 20-157(f) requires that motorists, upon approaching a stopped emergency vehicle with emergency lights activated:
- Move the vehicle into a lane that is not the lane nearest to the parked or standing authorized emergency vehicle and continue traveling in that lane until safely clear of the authorized emergency vehicle.
- In the case of only one lane for traffic being available, slow the vehicle, maintaining a safe speed for traffic conditions, and operate the vehicle at a reduced speed and be prepared to stop until completely past the authorized emergency vehicle or public service vehicle.