Colonel David Brierton, director of the Florida Highway Patrol, is asking Historic City News readers to be aware of, and comply with, the state’s “Move Over” law when approaching an emergency vehicle that is stopped on the side of the road.
Violating Move Over laws puts motorists and emergency responders at risk — and, in Florida, it can also result in a fine and points on your driving record, Troop G Sergeant Dylan Bryan told local reporters.
“Florida’s Move Over law was enacted in 2002 to safeguard Florida’s emergency responders who work on the roadways to protect you and your families,” Colonel Brierton said.
More than 200 law enforcement officers in the United States have died, and thousands more injured, since 1999, in crashes with oncoming vehicles while they were stopped on the side of the road — making a routine traffic stop anything but routine.
Understanding the Florida “Move Over” law:
• Drivers must move over when a patrol car, emergency vehicle and/or tow truck is stopped on the side of a road with lights flashing.
• If they cannot move over safely, drivers should slow down to a speed of 20 mph below the posted speed limit.
• Always approach the emergency vehicle with caution.
During the month of January, Florida Highway Patrol troopers will increase their focus on making drivers aware of the law protecting law enforcement officers, emergency workers and tow truck drivers who are stopped along Florida roadways while doing their jobs.