It is likely that those flashing lights, bright orange road cones, and
warning barrels in construction areas will soon be stacking up alongside
Indiana roadways. The Indiana Department of Transportation recently announced
at a press conference that the road construction season is now open for
business across the state. During this time it is important to also remind
drivers of Indiana’s Move Over Laws.
Indiana’s Move Over Laws are intended to protect all workers performing
their necessary duties on Indiana’s roadways. In addition to being
prepared to protect the safety for workers in construction zones, remember
that the same rules apply to emergency vehicles. This means drivers should
also MOVE OVER and SLOW DOWN for police, fire trucks, and ambulances.
Drivers should always use common sense and also be courteous to those who
are broken down or managing to swap a flat tire on the shoulder of the
road. Give them room so that they can safely repair their vehicles. Be
a courteous driver and help prevent tragedies.
Move Over Laws Protect Emergency and Highway Employees
Indiana law requires drivers to be aware and approach upcoming roadways
cautiously when they see emergency or highway maintenance vehicles stopped,
especially when seeing their lights flashing on any two or four lane roadway.
The best way to do this is for a motorist to slowly change lanes away
from the emergency or maintenance vehicle – safely. If this is difficult
to do, drivers can try reducing their speed to 10 mph under the highway
speed limit. Reducing a vehicle’s speed increases visibility and
the makes it much easier to safely react to traffic issues. Motorists
should proceed with extra caution making sure not to be distracted or
lose confidence in their driving skills. Motorists should NOT STOP in
the roadway for any reason not directed by road officials.
MOVE OVER and SLOW DOWN
As you are driving, plan well ahead by watching for these vehicles. Once
you see them and their flashing lights, assess if they are traveling or
managing a road situation and move over or slow down for them when needed.
- Ambulances and emergency medical vehicles
- Fire trucks and rescue equipment
- Highway incident-response vehicles
- Highway maintenance vehicles
- Police vehicles of all kinds
- Utility service vehicles
- Vehicle recovery equipment
Breaking the Move Over Law
There are things a motorist needs to do to not break Indiana’s Move
Over Law. The rules require motorists to, “move into another lane
if it is a multi-lane highway. If it’s a two-lane highway, motorists
should go around the stopped vehicles safely.”
Violating the law can result in a fine or your license will be suspended
up to two years if you cause damage to emergency equipment, injury or
death to an emergency worker.
The Indiana Department of Transportation created a Public Service Announcement
video concerning highway construction and work zone safety. It can be
viewed and shared with others by visiting the link below.
If you are in the Indianapolis area, and injured in a car wreck as the
result of someone’s negligence in following the Move Over Law, call
the accident attorneys at Wagner Reese at (888) 204-8440. We can help.