Chapin looks to improve safety for first responders

By Anthony Antoine |

Published 04/10 2014 12:34PM

Updated 04/10 2014 12:39PM

ILLINOIS -- Senator Chapin Rose (R) wants to increase safety for emergency crews on the highway. Part of his proposal would create a task force. WCIA-3's Anthony Antoine finds out what's involved in the plan.

When emergency crews respond to an accident on the highway, things get very dangerous, especially with the speed of oncoming traffic. That is why Rose is looking to make some changes.

He wants to find ways to increase safety for officers and firefighters on the highway. The idea came after firefighter Chris Brown was hit and killed by a semi.

Another tragedy spurring the idea, Officer Casey Kohlmeier and his K-9, Draco, were hit by a car and killed. Local firefighters are trained on safety measures already, but say they welcome any additional precautions.

"Anything that could be done to increase the awareness of not only emergency responders but workers working on the side of the highway is a great thing."

Right now firefighters use a technique called blocking vehicles. That's intended to push traffic over and slow it down while crews work. The resolution hasn't seen much progress just yet, but it will be made up of 16 members including firefighters, police officers and even members from IDOT.

Next step for the proposal? Rose plans to call it to the floor of the Illinois Senate. That could happen at any time.

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