Deputies warn drivers to be cautious after squad car hit

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DEWITT COUNTY, Ill. (WCIA) — Two deputies are safe after their squad car was hit while it was parked on the side of the road. They were working on IL-54 by Tunbridge Road. That’s about four miles west of Clinton.

No one was inside the vehicle at the time, but they were standing around it. One of them had to jump out of the way to avoid being hit. The deputies were helping a tow truck with a vehicle that had slid into a ditch. The roads were slippery at the time. One of the lanes was shut down while they were working on towing the truck, so they were directing traffic around it.

One of the deputies was standing next to the squad car and saw the other vehicle coming toward him. He started using his flashlight to try to get the driver’s attention. When he realized it was too late, he ran to the other side of the road and out of the way. Dewitt County Sheriff Mike Walker said this is an all-too-familiar experience.

“If you see those lights flashing, even though you’re a couple miles away, start slowing down especially in poor road conditions, and be prepared to stop. You might now have to, but you need to at least slow down and be prepared to stop way before you get on scene because that’s what causes problems,” said Walker.

Some parts of central Illinois could get another round of wintry mix overnight. That’s another reason why people should be extra careful. You should always slow down when you see emergency lights, but do it much earlier when the road conditions are icy. The sheriff’s department says the driver who hit the squad car is doing okay.

Last summer, the fine for Scott’s Law violations increased to $750 from $250. That’s for the first violation. Money from those fines will go to a fund to educate drivers about the law. Lawmakers also agreed to dedicate this bill to the officers killed in the line of duty this year.

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