KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Knox County first responders are reminding drivers to be careful on the roads over the next few days and to use caution when calling 911 during hazardous road conditions.
Crews with Rural Metro are used to getting more calls this time of year for fires, often heater-related, as well as for car accidents during inclement weather. While most of them involve property damage only, many result in a call to 911.
Jeff Bagwell, public information officer for Rural Metro, encourages drivers to call a nonemergency line if they’re involved in an accident and uninjured. The same is true for those who pass a car on the side of the road.
“Before you call 911 ask if anyone is hurt, because a lot of times we’ll risk life and property, our property being the fire truck, to drive to get to somebody who has crashed, when in reality we get there and they’re standing outside their car going, ‘I don’t know why you’re here because I’m not hurt,'” Bagwell said.
If you’re unable to tell dispatch whether a driver is hurt, that automatically triggers a response from crews like Rural Metro and ultimately takes resources away from those who may be in life-threatening situations, Bagwell explained.