Traffic incidents are often times the number one cause of death for police officer and emergency responded nationwide.

Across the country every year, hundreds of emergency responders are struck and either injured or killed when working an incident on or near roadways.

It’s National Traffic Incident Response Awareness Week and Sergeant Jason Pace with the Missouri State Highway Patrol says they’re spreading the word about slowing down on the roads, especially when emergency crews are at the scene of a crash.

“Everyday emergency responders throughout our country work to help save lives at the scene of many traffic incidents. Our goal is to also relieve congestion on the roadway in the quickest and safest manner possible,” said Pace.

Last year, MoDOT received over 7,000 calls and the Highway Patrol received over 827,000 related to traffic incidents.

“We’re also placing an emphasis on the Missouri Move Over Law, which reminds motorist to use caution when approaching any vehicle when flashing lights are on the highway,” said Pace.