Watch for tow trucks this winter

MUSKEGON, Mich. -- Tow truck drivers and other emergency vehicles have this reminder for drivers this winter: Slow down and move over. It's part of a statewide campaign to reduce the number of accidents between cars and emergency vehicles.

Andrew Heykoop of Eagle Towing in Muskegon says one tow truck driver is killed every six days nationally. He says this number would decline if people simply followed state law. “People are in a hurry or not paying attention," said Heykoop. "They don’t think it’ll happen to them."

Michigan state law requires that drivers move over one lane -- if safely possible to do so -- and slow down for emergency vehicles. If it's not safely possible to move over one lane, or if you're traveling on a two lane road with oncoming traffic, you're required to slow down and give the emergency vehicle as much room as possible.

Another way to prevent or reduce accidents on the roadways this winter: Make sure your vehicle is properly maintained. “Make sure you get your vehicle serviced," said Heykoop. "Make sure you have an emergency kit, and then check your tires and make sure you have proper inflation on the tire pressure and that you’ve got tread.”

With winter weather expected this weekend, there's a good chance you'll see tow trucks on Michigan highways. Just watch for their yellow or red flashing lights.

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