MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Law enforcement officials and people outside of law enforcement say that the Move Over law is designed to ensure the safety of first responders, tow truck drivers, and really anyone that’s on the side of the road.
“The Move Over law is a law that was enacted to reduce injuries and, or, fatalities as people are on the side of the roadway,” said Alabama State Trooper Benjamin Carswell.
Carswell says the instructions are clear.
“You have to move over, whether it be right or left, you’re supposed to vacate that lane closest to that vehicle that’s on the shoulder and or on the median. You’re required to reduce your speed more than 15 miles per hour below the posted speed limit,” he said.
But not everyone follows the law. Wednesday an Alabama State Trooper’s vehicle was hit by a tractor-trailer. According to Macon County EMA Director Frank Lee, the trooper’s vehicle was totaled. Thankfully, there were no injuries…however, that’s not always the case.
“We have a driver that was killed back in August due to the fact that the driver of the vehicle did not move over,” said Jacobs Towing Owner Judy Jacobs.
Jacobs says 90 percent of the calls their tow trucks respond to are on the side of the road, many along the interstate, and their drivers see a lot of people not following the law.
“You have close calls, you have driver’s that have to jump out of the way of moving vehicles,” Jacobs said.
As she knows all too well when people don’t follow the law it can lead to tragedy.
“There’s dads and moms and children that would be affected and just try to remember that,” Jacobs said.
Troopers say that bottom line, this law is meant to save lives and we’ve been told law enforcement is enforcing the law.
In September the fine for violating the Move Over law increased to $100 for a first violation, $150 for a second violation, and $200 for a third or subsequent violation.