Familiar With The “Slow Down, Move Over” Law? You Should Be
You might not be aware of this, but Saturday, October 16, is National Move Over Awareness Day. Another thing you might not be aware of is there's actually a "Slow Down, Move Over" law and it exists in all 50 states.
AAA, in order to raise awareness, is urging people to slow down and move over for emergency workers. The Move Over Law has actually been in effect since 2009 in the Bay State and its aim is to make all roadside emergency and maintenance professionals safer on the job. That also includes police and firefighters.
The Move Over Law basically requires drivers approaching a stationary emergency or maintenance vehicle with flashing lights to move to the next adjacent lane and slow down, if it is safe to do so. Failure to do this could result in a hefty fine.
Again, every state has a Move Over Law, however even though the law itself is about the same, the penalties vary from state to state. Also, keep in mind that the law applies to both sides of the roadway, not just the right shoulder.
National Move Over Awareness Day happens every year on the third Saturday in October and it highlights the importance of driving safely through emergency response areas. Mass.gov reports that every year first responders across the country are injured or killed on the job while providing emergency help.
According to AAA, on average, about 24 responders are killed each year while helping others on the side of the road. The majority of Massachusetts' drivers comply with the law but every year responders are still being hit or killed.
All drivers should make the effort to always move over(if it is safe to do so) to make roadways safer for everyone.