Tow Truck Driver: "I've been inches from getting smeared on the interstate."

Tow truck drivers watch to see if motorists will move over on Hwy 151 near Monticello to give them a safe distance as they work on hauling away a grain truck with a bad wheel.

JONES COUNTY, Iowa (CBS2/FOX28) – Iowa lawmakers say the new expanded Move Over and Slow Down Law, which goes into effect in July, should remove any confusion for what is required of drivers, but some tow truck operators in the corridor say a lot of motorists still don’t get it. The expanded version of the law requires motorists to move to the left lane to give more room to vehicles with flashing lights parked on the side of Iowa highways or interstates. In addition to squad cars and ambulances, now everything from garbage trucks to tow trucks are included.

Violators can pay more than $100 if cited, but Steve Koob says right now, many are still playing on their phones or oblivious to those earning a living on the side of the road. The third generation in his family business, Koob Automotive and Towing out of Monticello, says wrecker drivers have close calls every day, “ You might be two feet from somebody going 75. We’ve been brushed by cars, had our hats blown off, we’ve had our shirts pulled out of our pants just by the wind.”

Andrew Lindley at Reds Towing in Anamosa says it should just be common sense for people to move over and if they can’t do that to at least slow down, “ I mean I’ve been inches away from getting smeared on the interstate. You reach into the tool box and you’re feeling that brush on your vest from that wind.”

Koob’s is now hosting an event to shine a brighter light on the dangers. On June 12th the Spirit Ride will roll into the Jones County Fairgrounds with a real attention getter. It includes a casket on the back of a flatbed tow truck. The national effort is to promote safety and remind drivers to move over.

Jake Clark, a driver with Koob, says none of them have been hit yet, but it’s getting way too close for comfort, “ People are hugging that white line right where you’re working just inches away. There’s going to be a day when you’re going to be that person on the side of the road. You’re going to be stranded waiting for one of us to come and get you. We want to get you home, but we also want to get ourselves home to our loved ones.”

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