Connecticut State Police is cracking down on drivers who aren't moving over on the highway for emergency responders who are trying to do their work.
Drivers have been fined tens of thousands of dollars over the last two weeks after being accused of seeing flashing lights but failing to move over.
"Highway calls are so unpredictable because you just don't know what you’re going to encounter,” said Capt. Jeff Douchette of Poquonnock Bridge Fire Department.
Douchette said he knows about the problem on the highways first hand, and from talking to Fire Chief Joe Winski, who has been clipped twice by drivers who were not paying attention.
"The person didn’t regard the fact that the road was closed and went through, and as I walked around the apparatus I was clipped by the vehicle. Luckily enough I caught it out of the corner of my eye and basically had an abrasion, and the other time I dislocated my elbow,” Winski said.
So Winski and Douchette said they are thrilled that Connecticut State Police led a ‘Move Over’ campaign for the last two weeks, reminding drivers that if you see an emergency responder working along the highway, slide at least one lane away.
"The further they move over gives us that extra lane of safety for the people operating the scene,” Douchette said.
During the campaign, state police have issued nearly 500 tickets to drivers who failed to move over.
"I don't think it’s intentionally done by people, I just think they're unaware,” Winski said.
"We’ve got enough going through our minds that we don't want to be looking over our shoulders watching what the drivers are doing coming up behind us,” Douchette said.
Anyone who doesn’t move over can be issued a ticket that starts at nearly $200.
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