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Joint Press Conference at the Williston Barracks

Joint Press Conference at the Williston Barracks  Williston Vermont

posted at 4:17 pm Mon Jan 18th, 2010 by (WherezIt_Staff)

Preliminary 2009 Fatal Crash Data and Winter Weather Driving with emphasis on the "Move Over Law".

On January 14, 2010, the Vermont State Police, the Governor's Highway Safety Program, the South Burlington Police Department and the Chittenden County Sheriff's Department participated in a joint press conference at the Williston Barracks to speak of the preliminary 2009 Fatal Crash Data and Winter Weather Driving with emphasis on the "Move Over Law".

Steve Reckers of the Governor's Highway Safety Program spoke of the preliminary 2009 Fatal Crash Data. There were 75 fatalities. Below is a statistical break down:

Of the 75 fatalities:
Deaths 64% were males (48)
36% were females (27)

75% (56) in vehicles used as passenger conveyance

39% of fatalities in vehicles were restrained

76% (57) of fatalities were Vermont residents

41% of the fatalities occurred on a Friday or a Saturday

35% (67) were alcohol related while 11% (8) are unknown

10.7% (8) were motorcycle riders

Oldest deceased was 87 (2), youngest deceased was 3

Two damaged State Police cruisers and a damaged South Burlington Police Department cruiser that had been struck on the interstate this winter due to motorists not abiding by the "Move Over Law" were displayed at the conference to stress the importance of this law.

Lt. John Flannigan, of the State Police, spoke of two key points to remind operators on how to react properly while in the presence of emergency vehicles, towing and highway maintenance vehicles:

* When an emergency vehicle approaches any motor vehicle in traffic and that emergency vehicle is displaying it's flashing lights and or siren, all vehicles are to pull to the right and come to a complete stop. Simple rule to remember "Pull to the right for sirens and lights."
* The operator of a vehicle which is approaching a stationary law enforcement vehicle which is displaying a blue or blue and white signal lamp, or of a vehicle which is approaching a stationary ambulance, fire apparatus, a vehicle operated by a volunteer firefighter, rescue vehicle or a stationary towing and repair vehicle displaying an amber signal lamp shall proceed with caution, and, if traveling on a four-lane highway, and safety conditions permit, make a lane change.

It is reported that more than 150 U.S. law enforcement officers have been killed since 1999 after being struck by vehicles along America's highways, according to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund.

Violating Title 23 Vermont Statutes Annotated section 1050 (Operation on approach of law enforcement and emergency vehicles) carries a fine of $243.00 and five (5) points.

Winter Weather Driving Tips were provided, with the emphasis on driving safely on icy roads.

Photographs of the damaged cruisers are attached as well as tips for winter driving in Vermont that was referenced in the press conference.

CONTACT: Sgt. Tara Thomas, Public Information Officer
Vermont State Police - Headquarters

Steve Reckers
Governor's Highway Safety Program

Relevant Address(es):
Waterbury, VT 05676 (Set as Local)
South Burlington, VT 05403 (Set as Local)
Williston, VT 05495 (Set as Local)

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