Tow truck drivers demand changes to NYS “Move Over Law”

Regional News

(NEWS10) – In light of the crash that sent two NYS Troopers to the hospital with serious injuries, local tow truck drivers are demanding changes to the “Move Over Law.”

Every single day these guys are out on the side of roads and highways, with cars flying by. The crash on Sunday, now serves as a reminder of just how dangerous their job is.

“This is a sad day for everybody,” said Tom Brennan who watched the news broadcasts with awe.

Two NYS Troopers seriously injured while responding to an accident just off of I-90. A tow truck driver also hurt.

That hits home for Brennan, who is the owner of TNT Towing in Cohoes.

“As a towing industry, we need to say enough is enough – we have to protect our men and women on the side of the highways,” Brennan said.

A reminder of just how vulnerable first responders are on the side of highways. Brennan wants harsher penalties now for the “Move Over Law”.

“So it becomes a criminal charge, they get charged for doing this. Right now it’s just a slap on the wrist,” Brennan said.

“Everybody’s in a hurry,” said Dave D’Alessandro. D’Alessandro has been a tow operator for five years. He let NEWS10 ABC come along for a ride on Monday, the day after the terrible crash. He describes one time, a truck coming so close to hitting him, he nearly quit.

“It put the fear of God in me. For the next few weeks I was hesitant. I was hesitant if this is what I should be doing with my life,” D’Alessandro said.

That’s why he agrees with Brennan. The “Move Over Law”, which requires cars to get in another lane when passing first responders on the side of the road, needs to be tougher.

“I want to go home to see my daughters. I want to go home to see my wife,” D’Alessandro said.

Most drivers do the right thing by slowing down and moving over.

“It’s absolutely phenomenal,” D’Alessandro said. He calls it a sign of progress. “That’s what it’s about, that right there is what it’s about,” D’Alessandro said.

Tom Brennan will continue to push for those harsher “move over” penalties at the Capitol.

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