Injuries Reported after Vehicle Strikes Metro Nashville Police Patrol Car

Posted in Car Accident,Personal Injury,Tennessee Accident Law on March 7, 2016

Injuries Reported after Vehicle Strikes Metro Nashville Police Patrol Car

Two men were treated for injuries after their vehicle collided with a stopped Metro Nashville Police cruiser in Davidson County early Sunday morning.

According to a report by WKRN.com, the accident occurred in the westbound lanes of Interstate 24 near the downtown loop after a Nashville police officer stopped his patrol car to assist a stranded motorist whose vehicle had become disabled.

The police cruiser was blocking a portion of the left lane of I-24 when a vehicle almost clipped it. As the police officer stepped out of the vehicle to see if it had been hit, another car struck it.

Emergency responders treated two men who were in the vehicle that struck the police cruiser for injuries at the scene. The police officer was uninjured.

As a result of the collision, emergency workers temporarily closed I-24 westbound while they worked to clear the scene and investigate what caused the accident to occur.

3 Important Facts All Drivers Should Know about “Move Over” Laws

All emergency responders, whether they’re police officers, paramedics, firefighters, or highway response workers, put their lives at risk when they stop on busy highways and interstates to administer aid and assistance to injured or distressed motorists. In response to the dangers these professionals face, the state of Tennessee passed a law in 2006 that requires all drivers to switch lanes when approaching stopped emergency vehicles.

It’s vital that all drivers recognize the impact the “Move Over” law can have on saving the lives of emergency responder in Tennessee, and these three facts help illustrate its importance:

  • Nashville police issued 262 tickets for “Move Over” law violations from 2005 to 2014.

Although “Move Over” law violations may not be as common as other traffic violations, police in Nashville and throughout Middle Tennessee remain on the lookout for drivers who fail to switch lanes when approaching stopped emergency vehicles. In addition to the number of tickets issued in Davidson County, police in Williamson County have issued 525 tickets for violations from 2005 to 2014, while Putnam County police have issued 224 tickets during the same timeframe.

  • Around 10-12 police officers and 6-8 rescue/EMS workers are killed by traffic each year.

Anyone whose job requires working near moving traffic is at high risk of being struck by vehicles. Police officers and rescue/EMS workers may work just a few feet away from traffic that’s traveling at speeds in excess of 70 mph. In addition to the risks these professionals face, estimates also show that around 50 tow truck drivers are struck and killed by vehicles every year while doing their jobs—including 14 since July 2014.

  • The maximum penalty for violating the law is a $500 ticket and 30-day jail sentence.

Because emergency responders face such extreme dangers from passing traffic when they stop on highways and interstates, the penalties for violating the law can be stiff. However, the law doesn’t apply in every scenario. If traffic is heavy and it’s unsafe for you to switch lanes to move away from a stopped emergency vehicle that’s on the shoulder of the road, you will not be charged with violating the law. If you can’t move over, you should reduce your vehicle’s speed instead.

The Nashville auto accident attorneys at Matt Hardin Law appreciate the hard work and dedication of all emergency responders in the state of Tennessee. That’s why we strongly urge all drivers to keep the “Move Over” law in mind every time they get behind the wheel—especially when driving on highways and interstates. Shifting lanes and giving emergency workers plenty of room to safely do their jobs can significantly reduce their risks while on the job.

If you or someone you love was injured in an automobile accident in Tennessee—whether you were a driver, passenger, or a pedestrian—you may be eligible to receive compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and other accident-related expenses. To find out how we can help you and your family during this difficult time, contact us by dialing (615) 200-1111 or completing a free online consultation form. We’re here to fight for your rights.