MERIDEN - Members of the Berlin Police Department joined other local police forces to honor emergency responders struck and killed while trying to assist disabled motorists during an event on Tuesday.
The ceremony was part of a nationwide ‘Spirit Ride’ campaign to also raise awareness about Move Over Law in Connecticut. The American Towman ‘Spirit Ride’ began in June in Massachusetts and has already passed through almost 20 states and more than a hundred cities and towns.
Col. Alaric Fox of the Connecticut State Police, Chief John Gavallas of the Connecticut Police Chiefs Association, Emergency Services and Public Protection Commissioner Dora Schriro and members from Hartford, Cheshire, Wallingford, Watertown and Wolcott police department were in attendance for the ceremony that took place in front of the police memorial at the Police Academy in Meriden.
Immediately following the ceremony, AAA, the state and local police and tow truck operators joined in a procession to escort a ceremonial casket north on 1-91 and Route 9 toward Collinsville, before moving on to northern New Jersey.
“Emergency responders being struck on the side of the road isn’t something that could happen, this is something that does happen” said Amy Parmenter, spokesperson for AAA in Greater Hartford in a release announcing the ceremony. “A AAA tow driver in Fairfield suffered critical injuries this summer when he was struck while trying to help someone and another AAA tow driver was killed just last month in Pennsylvania.”
The Move Over Law requires drivers to move to the outside lane when approaching emergency vehicles, fire trucks and police cruisers that display flashing emergency lights when stopped on a roadway or in a breakdown lane.