This week (May 12-17) is National Police Week and AAA Carolinas is reminding motorists to do their part in protecting law enforcement on the roads by obeying the “Move Over Law”.

This law helps to protect State Troopers and other law enforcement officers as well as emergency vehicles and utility workers stopped alongside the highway. It is also extended to highway workers in temporary work zones.

“The Move Over Law is in place to protect both the emergency crews that are stopped on the road to help someone else and motorists driving on the road,” said Tiffany Wright, AAA Carolinas. “Adhering to this law will keep everyone safe.”

The law requires that drivers – if they deem it is safe to do so – move a lane away from any law enforcement or emergency vehicle on the side of the road. Law enforcement, emergency and utility vehicles should be stopped with lights flashing to alert drivers to move over. Drivers are also required to slow down and approach cautiously when driving by a stopped emergency vehicle.

Drivers approaching a stopped emergency vehicle, law enforcement vehicle, utility vehicle or temporary work zone should:

  • Significantly reduce their vehicle speed and keep vehicle under control.
  • Approach the scene cautiously.
  • If there is a second lane, motorists are required to change lanes away from the stopped vehicle.
  • Maintain the reduced speed until fully clear of the situation.

Failure to adhere to the Move Over Law in North Carolina can result in a $500 fine along with the possibility of being charged with a felony if a collision occurs. Failure to adhere to the Move Over Law in South Carolina is considered a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not less than $300 nor more than $500.