In tribute to tow truck driver who died, friends plead with motorists to ‘move over’

Updated: Jan. 13, 2020 at 7:31 AM HST
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HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - Friends of a tow truck driver who was fatally struck while helping a motorist who vehicle had stalled on the H-2 Freeway gathered Sunday night to pay tribute to him — and raise awareness about Hawaii’s “Move Over” law.

Dozens of people gathered at Restaurant 604 to remember Aaron Malama.

The 43-year-old died last week after being hit along the H-2 Freeway in Mililani by a driver suspected of driving drunk.

[Read more: Records show alleged drunk driver in a deadly Mililani crash is a repeat offender]

Fellow tow truck drivers filmed messages for a public service announcement.

Malama’s girlfriend, who was helping him at the scene, also opened up about her heartache.

“That's when I hear this speeding-up sound of a car and I hear a loud bang, boom, and I hear glass shattering and when I looked up, I was the only one standing,” said Joenel Quimpo. “There was nobody else around me.”

Hawaii became the 50th and final state to enact the “Move Over” law in 2012, aimed to protect those working on the side of the road.

[Read more: In wake of highway death, tow truck operators criticize ‘move over’ law]

The law requires drivers to slow down to a reasonable speed, and if possible, make a lane change in order to leave one lane between the driver and the emergency situation.

“I would like for people to be aware that when you see tow truck drivers on the side of the freeway, you need to automatically slow down and move over for the safety of these guys,” event organizer Mark Taleai said.

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