New York’s “Move Over” law, originally requiring motorists to change lanes and take caution on the road when approaching a vehicle with flashing red lights, is expanding to include vehicles with flashing amber lights as well, effective Jan. 1.
Construction vehicles, tow truck drivers and other roadside assistance vehicles will be now also included in the law.
The change in the law comes in the wake of the November death of a tow truck operator who was struck and killed in Syracuse while attending to a broken down vehicle on the highway.
“That’s one of those things close to home and you know it does happen more than any of us would like to see. But it’s one of the dangers of the job,” tow truck driver Bryan Rinwalske told WETM News.
Rinwalske said expanding the law to protect tow truck drivers is a relief for him and his workers. “If we have to keep watching our backs for passing traffic, that slows our process and it's scary at times, very scary.”
Although New York State Police hope the expanded law will slow drivers down and penalties for noncompliance are steep. If you don’t slow down and move over you could be fined up to $275, get 3 points on your driving record and jail time is also possible.