Local Trooper Promotes 'Moving Over' in Michigan State Police Campaign
FOX 47 News
Nearly two years later, Michigan State Trooper Drew Spencer has no memory of his accident.
"I don't remember that day, I don't remember what happened a week or two after," he said.
But for his colleagues, the memories of what was supposed to be a routine traffic stop are still fresh.
"I heard the brakes squealing. I looked up and saw a car coming in our direction," said Trooper Dana McKee, who witnessed Spencer's accident. "He reacted, but it was too late and he was struck."
Spencer spent the following weeks fighting life-threatening head injuries at University of Michigan Hospital. Luckily, he survived and with Labor Day weekend right around the corner, Michigan State Police is featuring Tpr. Spencer in its new 'Save a Life, Give a Lane' campaign.
The state-wide campaign, in conjunction with the Office of Highway Safety Planning, was introduced, Thursday, and will air radio and television public service announcements, promoting the state's 'Move Over' law. The law requires drivers to change lanes or slow down for police and emergency responders.
"If motorists choose not to get over or they don't slow down because they cannot get over, we will enforce that ticket," said Col. Kriste Etue of Michigan State Police.
It could save someone's life. Trooper Spencer was hit on I-96, east of Webberville and while he was able to survive, traffic accidents are the number one reason for police deaths around the country. In fact, three of the last five state trooper deaths have taken place after an officer was hit during a traffic stop.
However, Spencer says the dangers apply for all emergency responders and so does the law.
"It covers everybody. Not just law enforcement, but ambulance, firefighters roadside assistance," he said. "It covers everybody that is just trying to do a job and get home safe."
The 'Move Over' law went into effect in 2001. Anyone found violating the law is guilty of a misdemeanor.