Crash Responder Safety Week, observed from Nov. 13-17, serves as a reminder of the critical work undertaken by law enforcement, emergency medical services, firefighters, towing services, and Department of Transportation personnel, according to the Utah Department of Public Safety.
DPS called these individuals “dedicated,” saying they face inherent dangers while responding to motor vehicle crashes, incidents, and emergencies.
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration, these aforementioned individuals put their lives at risk when clearing each of the seven million annual motor vehicle crashes or the broader range of incidents like stalled vehicles or roadway debris.
The Utah Department of Public Safety said they have witnessed 15 struck-by incidents this year.
“While we are fortunate that none have resulted in serious injuries, the dangers are real, and the safety of our responders remains a top priority,” DPS said.
During Crash Responder Safety Week, DPS emphasizes the shared responsibility of keeping responders safe. The department said everyone plays a crucial role in this by adhering to Move Over laws, exercising caution when approaching accident scenes, and promoting safe driving practices to avoid crashes all together.
The theme for this year’s Crash Responder Safety Week is “Protect Those Who Protect You,” emphasizing the traveling public’s role in keeping responders safe while responders make roadways safe for all road users.