The incident occurred around 10:50 p.m. Friday October 30, 2015, as a trooper was conducting a traffic stop on a motor vehicle on Seaford Road (Alt. US13) northbound just north of Easter Lane, Blades. As the trooper exited the patrol car, a separate vehicle traveling northbound on Seaford Road passed the trooper within a matter of two feet, failing to slow down or move over even though there was no other traffic in the southbound lanes. The trooper discontinued the initial traffic stop and proceeded to catch up to the other vehicle and stop it on Johnson Road just west of Seaford Road. The trooper made contact with the operator, Willie L. Davis, 42 of Seaford, who was operating a Ford Ranger pickup, and an odor of alcohol was detected. A DUI investigation ensued and Davis was subsequently transported back to Troop 5 where an inquiry into his driving record revealed he was currently suspended from driving and had four previous DUI convictions (04/26/02, 05/25/04, 05/10/13, and 05/17/13,) this arrest would make #5.
Willie Davis was charged with 5th Offense Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol, Driving While Suspended or Revoked, and Failure to Reduce Speed or Move Over for Emergency Vehicles. He was arraigned a JP3 and committed to Sussex Correctional Institution on $6,550.00 cash bond.
"The Delaware State Police would like to remind motorists to move over or slow down for emergency vehicles, DOT vehicles, public utility vehicles, and tow trucks that are utilizing their overhead flashing amber, white, red, or blue lights. We are providing the state law so that people will re-familiarize themselves with the law and keep the workers and first responders safe."
Title 21 § 4134 Operation of vehicles on approach of authorized emergency vehicles.
(a) Upon the immediate approach of an authorized emergency vehicle making use of audible or visual signals, or of a police vehicle properly and lawfully making use of an audible signal only, the driver of every other vehicle shall yield the right-of-way and shall immediately drive to a position parallel to, and as close as possible to, the right-hand edge or curb of the roadway clear of any intersections and shall relinquish the right-of-way until the authorized emergency vehicle has passed, except when otherwise directed by a police officer.
(b) Upon approaching a stationary authorized emergency vehicle, when the authorized emergency vehicle is giving a signal by displaying alternately flashing red, blue, blue and white, red and white, red and blue, or red, white and blue lights, or upon approaching a stationary authorized vehicle of the Department of Transportation, which is giving a signal by displaying alternately flashing amber or red and amber lights, or upon approaching a stationary tow truck, which is giving a signal by displaying alternately flashing amber, white, or amber and white lights, or upon approaching a stationary vehicle owned or operated by a public utility, which is giving a signal by displaying alternately flashing amber, white, or amber and white lights, a person who drives an approaching vehicle shall:
(1) Proceed with caution and yield the right-of-way by making a lane change into a lane not adjacent to that of such vehicle, if possible with due regard to safety and traffic conditions, if on a roadway having at least 4 lanes with not less than 2 lanes proceeding in the same direction as the approaching vehicle; or,
(2) Proceed with caution and reduce the speed of the vehicle to a safe speed while passing such stationary vehicle, if changing lanes would be impossible or unsafe.
(c) This section shall not operate to relieve the driver of an authorized emergency vehicle from the duty to drive with due regard for the safety of all persons using the highway.
(d) Any person violating subsection (b) of this section who hits, strikes, or in any way contacts an emergency responder, causing physical injury, with that person's vehicle shall be guilty of a class F felony.