Ambulance Crash Prompts Reminder for Drivers

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GIBSON COUNTY, Tenn. – The wreck that ended with an ambulance and truck on its sides Wednesday in Gibson County has officers issuing a warning for drivers in times of emergency. They said think of it like this: If emergency responders cannot get there safely, then they cannot help anyone. Officers said keep it simple. If you are in the way, get out of the way. If you do not, you are breaking the law.  “The ambulance or the police car is in a hurry to get somewhere, to help somebody,” said Dave Chaffin, Assistant Police Chief with the Bradfod Police Department, who is also a defensive driving instructor. “If you’re in front of them, it’s just like blocking an aisle in the store. If you’re in front, you need to move.” Chaffin said drivers are often startled or confused when they see flashing lights. Though emergency personnel are trained to deal with that, if drivers do not yield, it is a safety hazard. “It causes a lot of problems for the other people to get to where they’re going, the emergency workers, and then they could even wreck and hit them,” said driver Brandy Shultz. Trenton Police are unsure who was at fault for Wednesday’s crash, but said the incident can serve as a reminder for drivers to follow the rules of the road. “What if that’s your loved one on the other end of that call that needs help? You don’t want to be the one that’s in the way,” Chaffin said. Officers said you should also move over and slow down if you see a vehicle with flashing lights on the side of the road. Chaffin said there are too many wrecks involving emergency personnel, and reducing them takes a team effort for both first responders and drivers. “Lights and sirens don’t mean that you’re no longer responsible or accountable or liable for a traffic crash,” Chaffin said. Police warn if you do not yield to emergency vehicles, you could get a ticket.

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