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On The Highway We've Got Your Back is brought to you by the Emergency Responder Safety Institute. is developed and supported by public safety leaders nationwide. Click here to read Mission... is brought to you by the Emergency Responder Safety Institute. is developed and supported by public safety leaders nationwide. Click here to read Mission...

Editors Column

We Are Picking Up Speed

Sunday, December 27, 2009

We are on the verge of entering a new decade.  What can we expect from the years which lie just ahead of us?  If the past is any indication, you and I should expect more hard work and heartache.  However, we should not lose heart.  If there is one thing that we have here in the world of highway safety, it is perseverance.  The folks here at and the Emergency Response Safety Institute are persistent, if they are nothing else.


Do not even hint that our efforts will come up short.  Think about it. Ten years ago there were many among our world would could not even spell "saftee".  Now we have a new level of safety available to the world through our training outreach program.  The public safety retro-reflective vest has entered out repertoire.  People are taking notice of our efforts and taking our work seriously.


How seriously you might ask?  It has been our good fortune to have the folks at the U.S. Fire Administration on our side.  Much of that which we have achieved could never have happened without the dedicated efforts of our dear friend Bill Troup.  We now have the legislation branch of our federal government laboring on our behalf.

That is right my friends.  As we enter the next decade of the 21st Century, important highway safety legislation has been introduced into the United States House of Representatives on our behalf.
The Emergency Responders Highway Safety Act of 2009 H.R. 4104 was introduced by Congressman Brad Ellsworth (IN-8).  The Legislation contains several key components:


·                     Promotion of responder safety training through a USDOT grant program

·                     Guidance of the overall responder safety grant program by a multi-disciplinary advisory group

·                     Requirement for a national “struck-by” incident reporting system

·                     Annual reporting to Congress on the progress which has bee made in improving responder safety


Congressman Ellsworth is a former Sheriff who reached out to the CVVFA Emergency Responder Safety Institute; the International Association of Fire Chiefs and the National Traffic Incident Management Coalition among other groups about his concern for emergency responders who are working on the roadways helping others.


Each of us needs to contact our legislators regarding the passage of this important piece of responder safety legislation.  This is not something which we cannot leave to the organization folks who do our lobbying in Washington, DC.  A groundswell of support must rise up within each state to ask our personal legislators for their support. 

John Corbin, Wisconsin Traffic Engineer and Chairman of the National Traffic Incident Management Coalition has stated that, “Passage of this bill would constitute a major advance in implementing the National Unified Goal for Traffic Incident Management.  You and I have been working hard to make this happen. It would be a real shame to lose our focus now.


We here at have made a tremendous impact upon the highway safety problem in the United States.  We have also helped to raise this issue on an international scale.  Think about it gang, we have done a great deal over the past ten years to make life a touch safer for fire, EMS, police, and towing operators out there on the highways and byways of our country.


The time has come to take our efforts to the next level.  In addition to urging support for this new piece of legislation, we are on the verge of creating an effort to educate the drivers of our nation as to how they can help us achieve our goal of improved highway safety.  There are many parts to the problems facing us.  We are working to nibble away at each of them.  Please stay with us as we work to make things safer for you and me. 


Please accept our best wishes for a safety, healthy, and Happy New Year.

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