Slow Down, Move Over is a Law in All 50 states

Slow Down, Move Over is a Law in All 50 states

AAA reminds motorists to help save lives on National Move Over Awareness Day
April S. Engram
national move over day slow down

New York State’s “Move Over Law” was enacted November 2016; however, many New York motorists are not aware of this life saving law. AAA is joining traffic safety advocates to raise awareness of this important law for National Move Over Awareness Day, Saturday, October 17th.  

The Move Over Law now exists in all fifty states and requires motorists to Slow Down and Move Over, reduce their speed and move to another lane (when possible) to “avoid colliding with a vehicle parked, stopped, or standing on the shoulder or any portion of the [road] when the vehicle is an authorized emergency response, tow truck, or maintenance vehicle with its lights flashing.” (Emergency response vehicle includes: police vehicles, fire trucks, ambulances, and construction.)

AAA was instrumental in advocating for the passing of this law and its inclusion of first responders and tow truck drivers. Unfortunately, law enforcement, emergency workers and tow truck operators continue to be struck and injured or killed while aiding others on the side of the road because a passing vehicle did not sufficiently slow down and move over.

AAA offers the following tips when motorists spot emergency or utility vehicles on the road:

  • Always remain alert: Avoid distractions and focus on the task of driving.
  • Watch the road: Look for situations where emergency vehicles, tow trucks, utility service vehicles or disabled vehicles are stopped on the side of the road.
  • Approach with caution: When approaching an emergency vehicle with lights flashing on the side of a two-lane roadway, drivers should slow down to a speed that is safe and approach with caution unless otherwise directed by an emergency worker on the scene. 
  • Move Over: On multi-lane roadways, slow down when you see the flashing lights of an emergency vehicle at the roadside and, if possible, move over into an adjacent lane. 
  • Go Slow: If you are unable to switch lanes, slow to a speed that is safe and reasonable. Some states recommend slowing to a speed that is 10-20 mph less than the posted speed limit.

AAA strives to raise awareness of many traffic safety measures, for more information, go to