Jerry Swanson

Move Over Law

Jerry Swanson, SPD Public Information Assistant, 509.610.9451

Wednesday, December 29, 2021 at 11:06 a.m.

Sgt. Teresa Fuller with the Spokane Police Department reminds drivers of the Move Over Law. When you encounter police, fire, tow trucks or other first responders and emergency vehicles on the side of the road you need to change lanes if possible and if changing lanes is not possible, drivers should reduce their speed to 10 miles under the posted speed limit.

Tragically, every year first responders are killed or seriously injured when drivers gets too close to responders providing emergency assistance.

These responders are friends, neighbors and community members just trying to do their jobs – let’s respect and appreciate them by keeping their work areas safe. Drivers who fail to move over and slow down face a $214 ticket that cannot be waived or reduced.

In residential areas where there is only one lane in each direction - just slow down as you go by and make sure to keep an eye out for the officer getting out of their car.

This law applies to ambulance drivers, firefighters, police officers and even tow truck drivers as they work by the side of the road with their emergency lights on.

Crews working on shoulders or closed lanes work just inches from moving traffic, so giving them some extra space helps keep everyone safe and traffic flowing. Inattentive driving, following too closely and speeding are the top three causes of work zone crashes on state roads – and all are preventable if travelers slow down and pay attention in and near work zones.

Remain alert, avoid distractions and focus on the task of driving. Keep an eye out for situations where emergency vehicles, tow trucks, utility service vehicles or disabled vehicles are stopped on the side of the road.

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