By Kristin Finney
Greene Publishing, Inc.
Very few Americans know about the Move Over Law. Even less know just how important this law is to obey. The Move Over Law is effective in 48 states; all states except Hawaii and D.C. The website dedicated to raising awareness of the Move Over Law, states that, “‘Move Over America’ is the national effort to make drivers aware of “Move Over” laws, which require motorists to “Move Over” and change lanes to give safe clearance to law enforcement officers on roadsides. Equally important is the action of creating attention in those States where there is no such law at present.”
In 2009 ten officers were struck and killed by vehicles, in 2008 there were 18, and since 1999, more than 150 officers have been struck and killed by vehicles.
In Florida, statute 316.126 section b states, “When an authorized emergency vehicle making use of any visual signals is parked or a wrecker displaying amber rotating or flashing lights is performing a recovery or loading on the roadside, the driver of every other vehicle, as soon as it is safe: 1. Shall vacate the lane closest to the emergency vehicle or wrecker when driving on an interstate highway or other highway with two or more lanes traveling in the direction of the emergency vehicle or wrecker, except when otherwise directed by a law enforcement officer. If such movement cannot be safely accomplished, the driver shall reduce speed as provided in subparagraph 2. Shall slow to a speed that is 20 miles per hour less than the posted speed limit when the posted speed limit is 25 miles per hour or greater; or travel at 5 miles per hour when the posted speed limit is 20 miles per hour or less, when driving on a two-lane road, except when otherwise directed by a law enforcement officer. 3. The Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles shall provide an educational awareness campaign informing the motoring public about the Move Over Act. The department shall provide information about the Move Over Act in all newly printed driver’s license educational materials after July 1, 2002.”
In Madison and Jefferson County the cost for an infraction of this law is $161.00. In Taylor County the cost is $151.00. In Leon County the price is $166.00 in the county, and it increases to $173.00 if you’re within city limits. In the surrounding counties of Georgia the prices are as follows: Lowndes County, $500.00; Thomas County, $97.00 and Brooks County is over $500.00.
Madison Police Department Investigator, Ben Ebberson stated of the Move Over Law, “One of the reasons it is there is because more officers are killed by traffic crashes than anything else. Twenty-two percent of all injury related deaths in officers are accounted for by officers being struck by vehicles. It’s an overwhelming issue to have people slow down and move over, because officers are dealing with potential dangerous situations with the traffic violator, and it is hard to divide their focus between the traffic violation and oncoming traffic as well.”
Tag Archive for speed
By Kristin Finney