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Tow truck company pushes for better understanding of Slow Down/Move Over law in Indiana

Posted at 5:45 PM, Jan 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-14 18:23:40-05

INDIANAPOLIS — Every year, people are killed while responding to help others during emergencies and some workers feel people aren't following the laws.

Being a tow truck driver is one of the most dangers jobs in America because data shows one tow truck driver is killed every six days.

"It's tough for kids nowadays to want to come and apply," Matthew Bartlett with Interstate Delaware & South Towing said. "Most 20-year-olds don't want to be out here doing what we do on the side of the road. Chances are if somebody gets struck out here, they're not going home that day."

He says some people don't always associate tow truck drivers with the slow down, move over law, which requires drivers to change lanes or slow down at least 10 mph when crews are on the shoulder of the raod.

On Tuesday, RTV6 saw several drivers disregard tow trucks with lights on several times.

"When police officers and firefighters are killed, they are all over national news, regional news," Bartlett said. "And they should be. Towing operators, we are lucky if we get 10 seconds of news coverage."

If a driver is convicted of violating the law, drivers can be fined or have their license suspended if they cause damage to emergency equipment. If someone is convicted of violating the law and causing injury or death, they can be sentenced to time in prison.

Bartlett says he thinks it should be a criminal offense if someone is violating the law.

"Be aware of your surroundings, give people some more space, look ahead," Bartlett said. "It's all the basic stuff they teach you in driver's ed, but as a society we have weaned away from that."

Services like Hoosier Helper sponsored by State Farm can respond to assist stranded motorists, help with traffic control or medical assistance. If you need help from Hoosier Helper, you can call 855-INDOT-4-U or 855-463-6848.

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