On Tuesday, July 19, shortly after 8 p.m., one of our officers from the Mount Vernon District made a traffic stop on southbound Interstate 95 near the exit for Route 1. The officer activated his blue emergency lights and pulled the motorist over on the right shoulder of the highway. As the officer exited his cruiser and still had his hand on the driver’s door, a vehicle traveling southbound in the far right lane struck the driver’s door, injuring the officer. The striking vehicle stopped and the driver was eventually issued a summons for violating section § 46.2-921.1. Drivers to yield right-of-way or reduce speed when approaching stationary emergency vehicles on highways; penalties. This law requires all vehicles to either move over a lane or, when unable to change lanes safely, to slow down and cautiously pass emergency vehicles with flashing lights. The law was designed to protect police, fire and other public safety officials who frequently work on the side of the road.
Thankfully, the officer was not seriously injured. He was transported to a local hospital and treated for non-life-threatening injuries.