PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - With two law enforcement officers in the Valley hit by cars this week, we’ve been looking into the hazards they face in the line of duty. They’re not the only profession facing the dangers of roadside traffic.
Andrew Marschand is a tow truck driver. He knows what it’s like to be inches from 70 mile-an-hour traffic.
“It’s a crazy place,” he said. “You know we’ve got cars zipping by right behind us and your head’s always on a swivel. And that HOV traffic is flying by.”
He’s never been hit on the job, but he’s had friends who’ve had to jump underneath the bed of the truck for safety. One colleague of his got hit in the elbow by the mirror of a passing car.
“It’s really dangerous for us when we’re constantly looking this way. You know, looking at what we’re doing, looking this way, looking at what we’re doing, looking this way. So people just need to pay attention, slow down, if you can move over a lane,” Marschand said.
First responders at the scene of a crash like Tuesday’s deadly accident in Scottsdale and Wednesday’s crash in Queen Creek may not have much reflective material on their uniforms. But they will almost always be wearing reflective vests on the road. MCSO says their deputy was indeed wearing his when he got hit. DPS protocol, for example requires troopers to wear the vests on the highway, too.
But unfortunately -- when texting and driving is involved -- brightly colored, reflective material isn’t always enough to save a life.
“Our biggest thing is to just pay attention when you’re out there and be aware of where you’re driving and where you’re going. The phone can wait,” Marschand said.