Move Over… or get a Traffic Ticket
Unexpected Traffic Violation with Big Fines
Did you know you could get a traffic ticket and fine for traveling in a lane next to an emergency vehicle on the shoulder? If you answered no, you’re not alone. North Carolina’s Move Over law protects law enforcement officers, emergency responders and utility workers stopped along side our highways.
The Highway Patrol took steps to ensure more safety for citizens and troopers. In January, 2002, the state’s Move Over law took effect requiring motorists, if they can safely do so, to move one lane away from any law enforcement or other emergency vehicle that is on the side of the highway. This law includes utility vehicles that are on the side of the road restoring electrical service during an unplanned event such as a hurricane or ice storm. The utility vehicles are required to have a flashing amber-colored light.
Traffic Violations Resulting from the Move Over Law
The law requires motorists 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. Motorists must slow down while maintaining a safe speed. G.S. 20-157 (f).
If you get a traffic ticket as a result of the move over law, you’re looking at a mandatory fine of $250.00 plus court costs.