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    Move over law

    Move over law

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    A sign informing motorists of the state move-over law at a New York State Thruway service area

    A move over law is a law which requires motorists to move over and change lanes to give safe clearance to law enforcement officers, firefighters, ambulances, utility workers, and in some cases, tow-truck drivers and disabled vehicles. In the past, Canada and United States have used this term to apply to two different concepts; however, this is beginning to change as Canadian provinces have begun expanding the scope of their move over laws.

    Contents

    1 In Canada

    2 In the United States

    3 References 4 External links

    In Canada[edit]

    In Canada, move over laws require motorists, upon noticing an incoming emergency vehicle (coming from any direction) with sirens or flashing lights operating, to move to the shoulder and stop, until the vehicle has passed the vicinity. This gives emergency vehicles a clear roadway for responding to emergencies, encouraging the fast response of emergency vehicles.

    The Province of Ontario's Ministry of Transportation and the Province of Saskatchewan's Ministry of Highways and Infrastructure were the first to implement move over laws.[1] Quebec was the last province to implement a move over law, which came into effect on August 5, 2012.[2]

    In 2005, the government of Alberta expanded the scope of the province's move over laws. Amendments were made to the province's Traffic Safety Act to require drivers to either slow down or move over when passing emergency vehicles or tow trucks stopped on the side of a highway when their "flashing lamps are operating."[3] The maximum speed for passing stationary emergency vehicles or tow trucks was set at 60 km/h, and the fines for exceeding that speed were doubled.[4]

    In 2012, Quebec established a Move Over Law (called in French as , or ). Unlike other laws found in US states and Canadian provinces, the Quebec law had broader application. Drivers would have to slow down and provide a buffer lane to a stopped service vehicle with active strobing/rotating lights or active traffic arrow. The service vehicles may be tow trucks, emergency vehicles (ambulance, police, fire), or highway department patrol vehicles.

    In 2015, Ontario modified the Highway Traffic Act, stating motorists shall slow down and proceed with caution, moving over if multiple lanes exist, when approaching stopped tow trucks producing intermittent flashes of amber light. The section does not define tow trucks as "emergency vehicles."

    In the United States[edit]

    In the United States, move over laws refer to requiring drivers to give a one lane buffer to stopped emergency vehicles. For example, while driving in the right lane, if the driver sees a stopped police car, the driver is required to move one lane over to the left to give enough buffer space to avoid any potential accidents.

    Move over laws were originated in the United States after a South Carolina paramedic, James D. Garcia, was struck and injured at an accident scene January 28, 1994, in Lexington. Garcia was listed at fault, leading to his work to create a law for emergency responders. South Carolina's version (SC 56-5-1538) passed in 1996, and was revised in 2002.

    After a series of similar events across the US in 2000, the US Department of Transportation and Federal Highway Administration began to address the issue of Emergency Scene Safety, and issued recommended changes for the new Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) that finally addressed the need for improved standards and protection for emergency workers. With the further assistance of public interest groups such as the Emergency Responder Safety Institute, move over laws became standard across the US and Canada.[5]

    In the United States, move over laws are aimed at protecting emergency responders working along the roadside. All fifty states have passed such laws, which were promoted in response to increasing roadside fatalities in the line of duty. The laws require drivers, upon noticing an emergency vehicle with sirens and/or flashing lights, to move away from the vehicle by one lane, or if that is not possible, slow down to either a reasonable speed or a fixed speed below the limit as defined by local law. This includes law enforcement vehicles, fire trucks and ambulances. In New York State, drivers must use due care when approaching an emergency vehicle that displays red and/or white emergency lighting such as law enforcement vehicles, fire trucks and ambulances and also vehicles with flashing amber lighting such as tow trucks, construction vehicles and other service workers stopped along the side of the road while performing their duties.[6] Since July 1, 2018, in Iowa, drivers must move over or slow down for any vehicle with flashing hazard lights.[7]

    Move over laws in some states (i.e., Mississippi, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota) do not require drivers to change lanes. In states that do, move over laws differ in terms of specificity regarding driver action. Some observed move over laws are somewhat vague in the actions required of the driver (i.e., use due care not to collide, provide as much space as practical, etc.) while other laws provide explicit direction (move to a non-adjacent lane, move to a lane farthest away from the emergency vehicle, etc).[8]

    Source : en.wikipedia.org

    Florida's Move Over Law in 2020

    The Move Over Law originated in 1994, when a paramedic in South Carolina was struck and injured while responding to an emergency situation roadside. S

    Florida’s Move Over Law in 2020

    The Move Over Law originated in 1994, when a paramedic in South Carolina was struck and injured while responding to an emergency situation roadside. Since then, all fifty states in the U.S. have adopted some version of a Move Over Law to protect emergency responders in the line of duty.

    50 of the 50 United States currently have and enforce a Move Over Law. Though each state has some version of this law, the regulations surrounding them differ quite a bit. For instance, the Move Over Law in California simply requires drivers approaching stationary emergency vehicles to “slow down,” while Wyoming’s statute requires drivers “to merge into the lane farthest from the vehicle when traveling in the same direction, if safe to do so, or to slow to a speed that is 20 miles per hour less than the posted speed limit.”

    So, with so many variations, how should drivers interpret the Move Over Law in the state of Florida?

    What is the Move Over Law in Florida?

    The Move Over Law in the state of Florida, also known as Florida Statute 316.126, was passed in 2002 and requires drivers to respect emergency vehicles giving audible or visible signals both en route to emergencies and stationary while assisting emergencies on the side of the road.

    When approaching or being approached by an emergency vehicle that is en route to an emergency, drivers must immediately vacate any intersection, travel to the closest edge of the roadway, and stop until the vehicle has passed.

    When passing a stopped emergency vehicle on the side of a roadway of two or more lanes, drivers must vacate the lane closest to the stopped vehicle(s) and slow to a speed less than 20 miles per hour less than the speed limit (or, if the speed limit is 20 miles per hour or below, slow to a speed of 5 miles per hour). When passing a stopped emergency vehicle on a single-lane road, or if unable to change lanes on a roadway of two or more lanes, the driver must slow speeds by the same quantities.

    Pedestrians must also recognize the Move Over Law by yielding to emergency vehicles until they have passed and otherwise adhering to the right of way (unless directed to do otherwise by a law enforcement officer).

    This statute also requires the DMV to provide educational campaigns to ensure the public is informed about the Move Over Act.

    What constitutes a violation of the Move Over Law?

    Because the Florida Move Over Law is rather all-encompassing, there are many ways to violate this statue and receive a ticket. Common violations include speeding past or failing to slow down when approaching an emergency vehicle, failing to move out of the way of an approaching emergency vehicle, or traveling too closely to a stopped emergency vehicle on the side of the road.

    Drivers can receive tickets for any of these violations, regardless of the damage caused by their actions or lack thereof. However, if any of these actions cause harm to fellow drivers or emergency vehicles or personell, the violation will be much worse.

    What emergency vehicles does this apply to?

    The Move Over Law in Florida applies to all emergency vehicles displaying either visual or auditory signals (like flashing lights or sirens) or in the act of providing emergency assistance. This includes tow trucks, first responder vehicles and police.

    What happens if you do not obey the Move Over Law?

    Penalties for violating the Florida Move Over Law differ based on severity. This type of violation is considered a “noncriminal traffic infraction.”

    In general, drivers who violate this statute can expect to pay a fine of at least $120 and incur three points on their driving record. These penalties may increase if the driver has already received multiple points on their record or has violated the same statue in the past. Additionally, drivers who fail to obey the Move Over Law and cause harm or damage as a result will receive heftier punishments.

    Can you fight this ticket?

    If you have received a ticket for violating the Florida Move Over Law, you do have options.

    Your first course of action should be to hire an attorney with experience in traffic tickets. This will help you build your case and have the best possible chance of fighting the ticket and winning in court. Once you have explained your case to an attorney, they can assist you in building a proper defense.

    Some defenses can include an unsafe situation preventing the driver from moving lanes or slowing speeds, lack of or improper notice from the emergency vehicles, or attempting to prevent further damage that would be caused by adhering to the Move Over Law.

    If you are looking to fight a Move Over Law ticket in Florida, call The Ticket Clinic for a free consultation at 1-800-CITATION (1-800-248-2846) or hire us online. Our experienced traffic lawyers have resolved over 3,000,000 traffic offenses nationwide since 1987.

    Source : www.theticketclinic.com

    3 Simple Tips For Driving Around Emergency Vehicles

    Learn what 'move over' laws mean and get tips to help you safely share the road with emergency vehicles.

    Resources

    Car insurance resources

    Tips for driving safely around emergency vehicles.

    Tips for driving safely around emergency vehicles.

    Last updated: January 1

    When you're approaching an emergency vehicle with flashing lights on the roadway, it's a good idea to know what to do. While laws vary by state, here are some general tips to keep in mind when sharing the road with emergency vehicles.

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    Understand your state's 'move over' law.

    According to the Department of Transportation (DOT), all 50 states have a "move over" law. You should look into your state's specific law to make sure you're aware of its details and following local guidelines. But, in general, this law requires that drivers slow down and move over to accommodate emergency vehicles with flashing lights, says the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. These include police cars, ambulances and fire trucks, though some states may require that drivers follow this law for any vehicle with blinking or flashing lights, says the DOT.

    Know how to safely pull over for emergency vehicles.

    Here are some tips to help you safely navigate around emergency vehicles.

    When an emergency vehicle approaches from behind

    Slow down, pull your vehicle into the right lane (or shoulder) and come to a stop, recommends the City of Madison Fire Department. If you are on a multilane road and cannot pull into the right lane due to traffic, pull your vehicle as far to the right as possible. This can help emergency vehicles move around traffic using the median.

    When an emergency vehicle approaches from the opposite direction

    The City of Roanoke says you should pull over on the side of the road (not in an intersection) and come to a complete stop. Watch for other emergency vehicles and remain on the side of the road until all of them have passed.

    When an emergency vehicle is stopped

    Slow down your car and move into an open lane, if possible, says Michigan's Office of Highway Safety Planning. Your state's move over law may also have more specific requirements for passing a stopped emergency vehicle. For example, Michigan's Office of Highway Safety Planning also states that drivers are required to slow their vehicle to at least 10 mph under the speed limit when passing a stopped emergency vehicle.

    Practice a safe following distance

    Even after an emergency vehicle has passed, you should keep your vehicle at a safe distance behind it. While rules can also vary by state, a general rule of thumb is to stay 500 feet behind an emergency vehicle, says the City of Madison Fire Department.

    Following these tips can help you keep yourself and first responders safe on the road. Remember to check your state's laws and look for other local guidelines to make sure you're aware of the requirements in your area.

    Source : www.allstate.com

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