When your car dies suddenly, your attention might turn to your missed appointments and the expense of fixing your car. In an effort to get on your way, you might call a tow truck driver to deliver you from emergency. However, tow truck drivers face dangers of their own on a daily basis. Here are two ways to keep your tow truck driver safe on the job so that you don't witness another accident:
1: Understand Your Local "Move Over" Laws
Most people don't realize it, but rescuing broken-down cars from the side of the road is a dangerous job. In addition to working with heavy equipment and cables, drivers are also faced with the threat of working around oncoming traffic and curious drivers. Although national statistics regarding tow truck driver injuries and deaths aren't recorded, the director of the International Towing Museum has stated that as many as 40 to 50 tow truck driver deaths are reported annually.
Because of these staggering numbers, some states have set "move over" laws, designed to protect tow truck drivers and other emergency responders. If you want to keep your tow truck driver safe, get to know the "move over" laws in your state. Here are a few things you might be required to do if you experience car trouble or spot an accident on the road:
- Emergency Lights: To make troubled vehicles easier for tow truck drivers to spot, some states ask drivers to signal their emergency lights if they are involved in an accident.
- Lane Choice: If broken cars are left stranded in the middle of the road, emergency workers might have to deal with traffic running along either side of the scene. To keep emergency responders safe, some states ask drivers to move out of the lane immediately adjacent to the stopped vehicle and to pass by slowly.
If you are involved in an accident or find yourself dealing with car trouble, focus on making your car visible and accessible. Consider turning on interior cabin lights to signal trouble. If possible, park in a nearby parking lot to make rigging your car a little easier.
2: Remain Calm
Unfortunately, being hit by passing cars isn't the only threat tow truck drivers have to contend with. Since being involved in an accident or dealing with car trouble can be stressful, some people make the bad choice of taking out their frustrations on their drivers—sometimes turning to physical violence. For example, a tow truck driver was fatally stabbed in 2015 during a roadside assistance call in California.
You never know what kind of day your tow truck driver has had. When you call for a tow, remember to be patient. Understand that your driver will have to face the same road conditions you did, including inclement weather and bad traffic.
By moving over, staying calm, and making sure your car is noticeable, you might be able to make your tow truck driver's job a lot safer.
For professional towing services, contact a company such as Superior Towing.