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Understanding Florida’s “Move Over” Laws

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After a number of fatal crashes involving emergency vehicles on the shoulder of the highway, the state of Florida decided to take action. Florida has now created a new set of laws with the goal of protecting emergency and assistance personnel when automobiles are on the side of the road.

A number of other states have also launched similar measures to prevent such tragic roadside accidents. According to a nationwide Mason Dixon Poll sponsored by the National Safety Commission, approximately 71 percent of Americans had never heard of ‘move over’ laws. This statistic highlights the need to raise awareness about these laws so that they can be effective in preventing accidents on state roads.

The move over law in Florida requires that when police, ambulance, fire, or other emergency vehicles have their sirens or lights on, all surrounding automobiles on a two-lane or broader roadway slow down to 20 miles per hour and get out of the way as quickly and safely as possible. If the posted speed limit is 25 miles per hour or less on a single-lane road, the driver is required to slow down to five miles per hour.

Move over laws require automobile drivers to move their vehicles into a neighboring lane to allow the emergency vehicle to pass with ample room. If a police car or emergency vehicle is stopped in the shoulder, the law requires all drivers on the road to vacate the lane closest to the shoulder.

Failure to follow Florida’s move over laws can have legal consequences, including:

  • Over $150 in fines
  • Potential increase in an individual’s insurance rates
  • Three points on a driver’s license

While it may seem that the penalties are not that severe, the costs associated with these penalties can become quite substantial. Under Florida law, traffic violations are a way of keeping track of traffic tickets for a driver’s overall driving record. When a driver pays a citation for a driving violation, there is an admission of guilt that results in points being added to that driver’s license. If 12 or more points are accumulated in a given 12-month time frame, the driver may be subject to driving restrictions. Thus, it is important to be vigilant of the number of points one accumulates.

Robert Dixon is a highly qualified Miami car accident attorney who has helped countless victims in personal injury cases. Our firm encourages all drivers to do as much as they can to prevent accidents, including moving out of the way for emergency vehicles and drivers who may be stopped on the road. If you or someone you know has been injured in an automobile wreck, you should contact an injury lawyer right away who can help you assess the merits of your case. We will help you get the compensation you deserve for your injuries. Contact us online or call us today at 1-877-499-HURT (4878) for a free, confidential consultation.

More Blog Posts:

Jury Selection in Florida Injury Cases, South Florida Injury Lawyer Blawg, November 12, 2014

Automobile Accidents with International Drivers in Florida, South Florida Injury Lawyer Blawg, November 12, 2014

Florida Statute of Limitations for Injury Claims & the Discovery Rule, South Florida Injury Lawyer Blawg, November 5, 2014,