BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Law enforcement is preparing for the busiest and most dangerous travel season.
Every year, hundreds of emergency responders are injured or killed while out working to keep the roads safe.
These emergency personnel are out on the roadways to clear accidents and get traffic restored safely, and they’re reminding drivers to be patient and pay attention when they see crews at work.
Roads will be packed with travelers for the holiday season.
A hectic time for drivers and first responders.
“People seem to get more stressed, and you see it in the way that they drive, they’re very aggressive and impatient,” said MDTA Police officer Howard Burnett.
Law enforcement will be out in full force scanning the roadways for distracted, impaired, or speeding drivers.
“Don’t speed, follow the rules of the roadway, and that will ensure that they get to their destination safely, as well as other drivers on the roadway,” Howard added.
Law enforcement is also urging drivers to obey the Move Over Law, which requires people to slow down and move over whenever they see emergency crews out on the road.
“Many of our first responders are seriously injured or killed while performing what many refer to as routine traffic duties of an officer,” said Howard County Police Chief Gary Gardner.
Rick Greenwell knows the dangers of working on the roadways firsthand. He was struck by a car while helping with a disabled vehicle on 695 last year.
“Broken left foot, multiple fractures on the right, and I was off for six months,” Greenwell said.
Greenwell wants drivers to pay attention when approaching the scene of an accident, and move over to allow an extra barrier of safety for the emergency crews.
“It will save lives, and when you save lives, we can all go home whoever is out there and be with our families,” Greenwell added.
Violators of the Move Over Law, which took over in 2010, face a fine of $110 if the violation causes serious injury or death. It goes up to $750.