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NY Drivers Ignoring Move Over Law

Published January 23, 2013 by Scott Gottlieb, Injury Law Attorney

Thousands of New York drivers received citations in 2012 for violating the state’s Move Over Law.

At least 12,740 citations were issued last year to motorists who failed to slow down or change lanes when passing an emergency vehicle stopped beside the road with its lights flashing.

When all the citations are tallied, the number of 2012 violations are expected to exceed the total for 2011, the year the Move Over Law was enacted.

Under the law, New York drivers must reduce speed and, when safe on multi-lane roadways, change lanes when an emergency vehicle – such as an ambulance, police car or tow truck – is on the side of the road with their lights flashing.

The measure is intended to cut down on New York automobile accident deaths and injuries.

Following is from the Albany Times-Union:

According to the state Department of Motor Vehicles,13,908 citations were issued statewide in 2011 under the Move Over Law.

An incomplete 2012 tally — not all municipalities have supplied final numbers — shows 12,740 citations were issued last year. Of those, 12,187 were issued in relation to emergency or police vehicles, and 553 involved tow trucks, roadside assistance or highway maintenance.

“Based on these early numbers, we believe the total numbers for 2012 will exceed the numbers for 2011,” DMV spokeswoman Stacy Wood said.

Drivers who violate the Move Over Law face fines up to $275 and an $85 court surcharge. They can also be sentenced to up to 15 days in jail and assessed three points on their driving record.

New York was the 48th state to pass such a law.

The law requires drivers to pull over for:

  • Emergency vehicles – police, fire, EMS
  • Towing and recovery services flashing amber hazard lights while working on the shoulder of the road
  • Highway and local maintenance and construction vehicles
  • Other roadside assistance vehicles.


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