With Roswell (and the rest of New Mexico) deep in grip of the winter season, ice-covered roads may be a daily expectation. With such hazardous road conditions may come an increased need for the roadside assistance of first responders to help those who have either sild off the road or been involved in accidents. These brave individuals may often be required to put their own safety at risk in order to help others. Motorists can do their part to keep first responders safe by using added caution when passing the scene of an accident. Sadly, that does not always happen.
This sad fact was on full display in a multi-vehicle accident on I-40 near Coors that took the life of a local tow truck driver. A state police officer has stopped at a crash scene on the freeway, only to then have his own vehicle struck by a passing semi-truck. The tow truck driver stopped at the scene to help, yet shortly after he exited his vehicle, he was struck by another semi. An investigation into the incident is still ongoing, and no arrests have yet been made. While no confirmation has yet been given as to whether the tow truck driver has been dispatched to the scene, early reports seem to indicate that he was simply acting as a Good Samaritan.
Many states attempt to protect first responders (among whom tow truck drivers are included) by enacting legislation requiring drivers who see them on the sides of roads to move into the furthermost lanes in order to provide them with plenty of space. A failure to do so could be viewed as negligence (even if a driver was not speeding or acting recklessly). Those looking to take action against such negligence may first want to consult with an attorney.