Deputy warns drivers to slow down after close call

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WATERLOO, Iowa (KCRG) - Even after 14 years with the Black Hawk County Sheriff’s Office, Deputy Kari Harden said she has never faced a call quite as close as the one she had Sunday.

“We deal with a lot of scary things, a lot of scary things,” she said. “But that’s one of those situations you can’t even prepare for.”

Deputy Harden and another deputy, Deputy Smith, were helping to get a car out of a ditch along the side of Interstate 380 near Raymond when another car spun out of control toward them. The car hit the back of Deputy Smith’s car, but no one was hurt.

Deputy Harden said they tried to brace themselves as best as they could.

“You have a 4,000-pound vehicle coming at you at 60 miles per hour,” she said. “There’s not many tactics that can help you get out of the way.”

After the scary situation, Deputy Harden is warning other drivers to slow down when the weather’s bad, especially if they see a car pulled over. She said driving the speed limit is too fast when roads are slick.

“The officers that are out here have families to go home to, and we want to go home too, but nothing is that important that you have to be going that fast,” she said.

She also reminded drivers of Iowa’s Move Over or Slow Down Law, which requires drivers to switch lanes or slow down when they pass an emergency vehicle pulled over with its lights on, or a regular car pulled over with its hazard lights on.