Ohio's Move Over Law...
Ohio’s Move Over Law requires motorists to cautiously shift over one lane — or slow down if changing lanes is not possible — when passing any vehicle with flashing lights on the side of a road. Its purpose is to protect everyone who works on our roads and everyone who travels on them.
As of January 1st 2014, some changes have been made to Ohio’s existing “Move Over” law.
The “Move Over” driving law previously required drivers to slow down or change lanes when a police office or police vehicle was stopped along the side of the road. The new changes have expanded the existing law to include maintenance and construction workers. The expansion was passed in early December 2013 as part of Ohio Senate Bill 137.
According to the Ohio State Highway Patrol, the law was expanded to improve the safety of maintenance workers on Ohio roads. The law was inspired by a fatal accident involving an elderly construction worker in Avon, Ohio in 2012. The Ohio State Highway Patrol and the Ohio Department of Transportation have stated that expanding the laws are an important step in keeping construction and road maintenance workers safe.
Ohio Work Zone Injury and Crash Statistics
According to the United States Department of Transportation, there are about 20,000 road construction workers injured on the job each year. 59 percent of all work zone fatalities occurred in zones with a speed limit higher than 55 miles per hour.
According to the 2010 Ohio Crash Statistics Report, there were 5,069 road accidents occurring in or around work zones. 10 of those accidents resulted in fatalities, and 1,270 resulted in injuries. The Ohio Department of Transportation hopes to reduce the number of accidents seen in Ohio construction zones reduced with the expansion of the Move Over law.
The Move Over Law was designed to help drivers become more aware of construction and maintenance workers when behind the wheel. Drivers should take the following steps when driving near construction or maintenance vehicles or personnel:
Why Move Over?
Because across the nation,
in roadside accidents...
Move Over for Safety. Every Worker, Every Time!
What is the Move Over Law?
Ohio's Move Over Law is designed to protect the lives of everyone who works on
or uses our roadways. The law requires all drivers to move over one lane passing
by any vehicle with flashing or rotating lights parked on the roadside.
The original law took effect in 2004 to reduce risk to law-enforcement officers, emergency responders and tow operators. It was expanded in December 2013 to apply to every stationary vehicle with flashing lights, including road construction, maintenance and utility crews.
What if I can't move over?
The law recognizes that sometimes it is not safe or possible to move over because of traffic or weather conditions or because a second lane does not exist. In those situations, slow down and proceed with caution. Watch for people or objects that could enter your travel lane, and be prepared to stop.
How does the Move Over law differ from yielding the right of way to emergency vehicles?
Yielding the right of way to an emergency responder requires you as a driver to pull to the right-hand side of the road and stop when a law-enforcement officer, fire truck, ambulance or other emergency vehicle approaches using a siren, lights, or other warning devices. You must wait until the emergency responder(s) has passed by before you can resume driving.
How serious is the problem?
Across the nation, hundreds of people are killed or injured every year when they're struck by a vehicle after pulling over to the side of the road or highway. On average, these "struck-by" crashes kill one tow-truck driver every six days; 23 highway workers and one law-enforcement officer every month; and five firefighters every year. Tragically, stranded motorists are also struck and killed.
Can I be cited for failing to comply with the Move Over law?
Yes, and the issue is so serious that fines are doubled. Violators are fined 2 x $150 for the first violation (a minor misdemeanor), 2 x $250 for the same violation within a year of the first, and 2 x $500 for more than two violations in a year.
What types of roadways does the law apply to?Ohio’s Move Over law applies to all interstates and state highways. It can be enforced by any law-enforcement officer, including state highway patrol officers, local police, and county sheriff's deputies.