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22 January 2010

Move Over or Slow Down Law

The news reported that police are out in force today, fining people $382 for a new law that passed a couple weeks ago.  No, this isn't the new cell phone law (in which they are also ticketing people for something we didn't know came into existence a couple weeks ago) -- it's the "Move Over or Slow Down Law".  Usually, I wouldn't be concerned about this as I do pull over or slow down when I see ambulances or police with their lights on or whatever, but this law also applies to vehicles with the amber lights on -- like tow trucks.

Drivers must now move over to a non adjacent lane (or slow down) when approaching the rear of a tow truck or roadside assistance vehicle that is providing assistance to a disabled vehicle on the roadway. The original law covers police, fire and ambulance vehicles.

Now, you must move over if possible to another available lane (or slow down if you can't move over or if the move would be unsafe) when approaching the rear of an Emergency vehicle, tow truck or roadside assistance vehicle that has it's amber, red or blue flashers activated.

Slow down means reducing your vehicles speed by at least five miles per hour below the posted speed of the roadway.  HB 2040 requires drivers to slow down at least 5 mph below the posted speed if making a lane change (moving over) is unsafe or impossible (i.e. two-lane road.)
 
Most importantly, drivers should be alert. If you can safely move over when approaching a disabled vehicle receiving assistance, do so. If you can't, then slow down!
 
The fine for this violation is currently $287.00 ($400.00 if the location is within a Safety Corridor, School Zone or Work Zone).
 
The Law (adding tow trucks and roadside assistance vehicles) Becomes Effective: 

January 1, 2010

A partnership between the Oregon State Police and the Oregon Department of
Transportation regarding the "Move Over" law has created new media
opportunities and additional public outreach materials which are posted below.  The Zip File was created to allow you to download all available Oregon Media
related to the "Move Over" Law.