A New York State Police patrol vehicle with a 23-year veteran inside was struck by a tractor trailer Tuesday night.  The trooper suffered minor injuries.

You might be wondering, "well, what exactly happened here?"

On Tuesday evening, a trooper had just issued a traffic ticket to a vehicle on State Route 17 in the town of Nichols.  The trooper stepped inside his marked patrol vehicle and was waiting for the vehicle that he had stopped to pull out into traffic safely when a tractor trailer struck him from behind, shearing off most of the driver’s side of the 2019 Dodge Charger.  The tractor trailer did not stop and continued eastbound.

Here's my thing: police, troopers, paramedics, firemen - they all put their lives on the line to keep us safe. The law is in place in our state for a reason.

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Not familiar with the law? Here's a little refresher thanks to AAA:

"Drivers traveling in the same direction must exercise due care, include moving from a lane immediately adjacent, and reducing speed, to avoid colliding with a vehicle parked, stopped, or standing on the shoulder or any portion of the highway when the vehicle is an authorized emergency response, tow truck, or maintenance vehicle with its lights flashing."

I have a hard time understanding why it's difficult to remember that you need to move over. Now I get it, sometimes there are situations where, say, you're stuck in traffic and an emergency vehicle is trying to get through but there's no where for you to go. But in this particular situation, the driver 100% should have pulled over.

I think it's important for all drivers to keep the bit of information in their heads.  Whenever there is an emergency vehicle (or, even a tow truck,) you should pull over! Pulling over literally saves lives.

In this particular story, the driver of the tractor trailer that struck the patrol vehicle was drunk. But it still should serve as a reminder of how important it is a) not only to not drive under the influence but b) be aware of your surroundings and pull over.

It's really a simple concept. More importantly, IT IS THE LAW.