The “Move Over” Law
This law was created to reduce the number of injuries and fatalities to police officers, paramedics, firefighters, wrecker operators, and highway maintenance workers by maintaining an open buffer lane between passing highway traffic and authorized roadside emergency vehicles displaying flashing yellow, amber, white, red, or blue lights.
In Georgia, this law requires motorists to:
- Move Over to the next lane if safely possible, OR
- Slow Down below the speed limit and be prepared to stop.
This law applies to any emergency vehicle parked on the shoulder of the highway.
Why was the “Move Over” Law Passed?
- Because it saves lives. The “Move Over” Law helps maintain traffic flow and protect the safety of emergency personnel and motorists.
- Emergency vehicles parked beside a highway are vulnerable to crashes, even when their emergency lights are flashing.
- More police officers are killed by traffic crashes than in any other line-of-duty cause of death. More than one fourth of those killed are struck by passing vehicles while they work outside their patrol cars.
How does the “Move Over” Law make a difference?
- Thirty percent of all crashes occur as the result of another crash.
- Providing a buffer lane for emergency vehicles parked on the roadway shoulder actually reduces the risk of another crash.
- When the required clearance is given to roadside emergency vehicles, the margin of safety is increased, not only for public safety and emergency personnel, but for motorists and their passengers as well.
It’s the Law!
- The “Move Over” Law became effective July 1, 2003. Violations can result in a fine of no more than $500 for the first offense.
- The “Move Over” Law is another good sense driving reason to slow down on the highways and interstates.
Regulations in red are new this year.
Purple text indicates an important note.