MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Two paramedics are recovering after a car hit and seriously injured them while they were doing their jobs.
That crash came about 36 hours after a TDOT worker was hit and killed while working on the side of a highway.
State law requires drivers to move over or slow down for emergency and service vehicles.
The head of the Memphis Fire Fighter’s Association said people are not obeying that law. He said it’s making it hard for first responders to do their jobs.
“We just finished burying someone from a wreck. Unfortunately, that’s what everyone was thinking about. Not again,” president of the Memphis Fire Association Thomas Malone said.
Through tears, Malone remembers the early Sunday morning call that an alleged drunk driver had hit two paramedics and their ambulance.
They were helping someone on the side of I-240 at Norris Rd.
“They went around to the right on the guard rail side and tried to squeeze in between, and quite frankly, we were lucky not to have anyone killed,” Malone said.
Malone said reckless driving is growing concern emergency workers are faced with daily.
“If a firefighter can’t protect themselves, they can’t protect the public,” he said.
Malone said he wants drivers like the one responsible for Sunday’s wreck to be held responsible.
He’s calling for stricter penalties and for the state to bring in more state troopers to crack down on reckless and distracted drivers.
Until then, he’s asking for people to follow the law.
“Move over. Give these people the right of way. Let them do their job and just pray it’s not your family we’re working on,” Malone said.
As of Monday afternoon, Malone said one of the paramedics involved in yesterday’s wreck was still in the hospital.
The other has been released.
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