13 Illinois State troopers have been struck while on the job this year

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EAST MOLINE, Ill. (KWQC) - 13 Illinois State troopers have been struck while on the job this year. One was killed.

Illinois state police say these numbers are staggering, "And we're only in March?" says Illinois State Trooper, Jason Wilson of District 7.

A brush with death is far too common for state troopers.

"We're sitting there and there's another semi that came up behind us at full speed and it was five to ten feet away as it finally moved over, as it was finally able to move over into the other lane of traffic and missed me by those five to feet," says Wilson. "Any state trooper who's been on the road for about a month probably has a story like that."

State police say there's a law that's been in place for over a decade and it's there to save lives. Scott's Law was renamed the "Move Over," law to make it clearer to drivers.

"That's why it's so important we continue this move over law awareness, where people need to understand you see flashing lights you need to move over away from that scene or at least slow down but that doesn't alleviate your responsibility to move over if you can. That extra 12 feet could mean life or death literally for us," says Wilson.

Trooper Wilsons says distracted drivers aren't the only ones who violate the law.

"With St Patrick's day weekend one of the troopers that was struck was hit by someone who was under the influence of alcohol at that time."

Illinois State police say they also believe that the number of tow truck drivers that have been hit in Illinois is high as well.

The law requires you to move over for stopped emergency vehicles including police, fire, EMS, construction, tow truck drivers and also any car that has an emergency or has their emergency flashers on.
Breaking the law means facing a penalty of up to $10,000.