What Is The Move Over Law?

Effective December 1, 2019, a person who violates the Move Over law and causes serious injury could face jail time.

The Move Over law requires drivers to ” slow down and approach cautiously when an emergency vehicle is stopped on the shoulder of the roadway with its lights flashing. Motorists are required to move over to another lane away from the emergency vehicle on a multi-lane highway or slow down on a two lane highway and can do so safely.  “

For example, if you are driving on I-40 and there’s an ambulance or police car on the side of the road with it’s lights flashing, you must move over into the next lane if you can safely do so. You must also slow down while passing the emergency vehicle. This law also includes utility vehicles, such as those repairing electric lines.

Law enforcement in Wake County take the Move Over law very seriously. A violation of G.S. 20-157(f) is a Class 2 misdemeanor, but can be a Class 1 misdemeanor if there is damage, and a Class F felony if someone is seriously injured (it was previously a Class I — this is a significant jump). You may also face a $250 fine, and judges tend not to grant PJCs for these charges– meaning your insurance will skyrocket. You should not try to fight a Move Over charge without an experienced Wake traffic attorney.

Multiple officers have been killed due to drivers failing to abide by the Move Over law, hence the harsh punishment.

If you have received a traffic ticket or been charged with a Move Over violation in Raleigh, Apex, Wake Forest, Cary, or elsewhere in Wake County, contact Lawyer William Pruden at 919-880-2124 for a free consultation.

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