BEND, Or-- The City of Bend Fire and Police Departments would like to see drivers be more cautious around emergency personnel working on roadsides and highways after an alarming number of deaths in January. Seven first responders have been killed across the nation in the past two weeks as a result of drivers negligence around roadside emergencies.
Bend Fire Chief David Howe says the cause of the accidents are generally due to three factors: folks driving too fast, not driving to meet the weather conditions of the roads and simply not paying attention.
In addtion it's important to move out of the way when emergency vehicles are approaching your car. Howe said it's far too difficult for a 13 ton fire truck to avoid you if you don't pull to the right. The 'move over and slow down' law in Oregon requires drivers to move immediately and safely to the right when emergency vehicles have sirens and lights on.
Chief Howe says there are a lot of distractions in today's automobile such as mapping, music and phones that steer attention away from the roads---which can end up getting you, or others killed.