The State Patrol said Wednesday that its squad cars at traffic stops are being struck by other vehicles at an alarming rate so far this year, 10 times already in 2013, with four of those coming in March.
Two troopers have been hurt in those 10 crashes, according to the Department of Public Safety.
There were 17 such crashes in all of 2012, 26 in 2011 and 27 in 2010.
One of the troopers struck this year will talk about his incident during a news conference later Wednesday at the State Patrol offices in Golden Valley.
In Minnesota, motorists must move over for stopped emergency vehicles that have emergency lights activated to give responders room to work safely.
The requirement is known in Minnesota as the Ted Foss “Move Over” Law. Foss was struck and killed in 2000 by a passing vehicle as he was responding to a crash scene on the shoulder of Interstate 90 in Winona.
“The job of emergency responders is to help and assist the motoring public, and it is important that motorists assist us by moving over so we can provide our services safely,” said Patrol Lt. Eric Roeske.
The law requires:
• When traveling on a road with two or more lanes, motorists just keep over one full lane away from stopped emergency vehicles with flashing lights activated — ambulance, fire, law enforcement, maintenance and construction vehicles.
• Reducing speed if unable to safely move over a lane.
• Fines can exceed $100.