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More First Responders Are Being Killed By Distracted Drivers

The National Safety Council says 71 percent of drivers admit to doing it

May 28, 2019 - 10:43 am

PITTSBURGH (Newsradio 1020 KDKA) - An increase in distracted driving is costing the lives of more police and other first responders.

More drivers are admitting to distracted driving while passing a first responder on the side of the road and 16 percent say they have hit or nearly hit a first responder.

You may have seen it or done it yourself; snap a picture on your phone, text or share a roadway incident as you pass.

The National Safety Council says 71 percent of drivers admit to doing it.

State trooper Melinda Bondarenka says Pennsylvania has a Steer Clear law.

“You need to move over to a non-adjacent lane if possible,” said Bondarenka.

She adds it’s more than police at risk.

“It could get a tow truck,” said Bondarenka. “It could be one of these Parkway service trucks that you see on the Parkway.”

So far this year 21 first responders nationwide have been killed road side. 40 were killed all of last year. That's on pace to exceed last year which was up 60 percent from 2017.

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