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New York drivers: Do you know when to move over?

At any given time when people are behind the wheel, they are likely focusing on many different aspects of driving. They are staying under the speed limit, watching out for other drivers and making sure they use their turn signals all while trying to just get from one place to another. With all these thoughts and considerations going on in a person's head, it is not unusual for a person to make a simple mistake.

One mistake that many New Yorkers make on the road is forgetting or failing to move over when there is an emergency or stopped vehicle on the side of the road. This may seem like a minor oversight by a driver, but state police officers want to remind drivers that failure to comply with the Move Over Law can result in a traffic ticket and points on a license.

Drivers are being reminded that they are supposed to either move over or slow down considerably when there is a motorist in distress or emergency vehicles on the side of the road. If a car is stopped on the right shoulder, drivers should move out of the right lane if possible. If this is not possible, they are expected to slow down to about 20 mph below the posted speed limit. Motorists do not need to stop completely in the event that there is a vehicle pulled over to the side, as that could create a separate hazard for others on the road.

When a person does not slow down or move over, the fear is that a person in the distressed or emergency vehicle can be catastrophically injured by passing traffic. While these situations may not be common, when they do happen, a person can be killed.

If a driver is cited for not complying with the Move Over Law, he or she can be fined and get three points on a driver's license. While this may not seem all that serious, it is important to remember that any driver who has accumulated 11 points or a total of three moving violations over the course of 18 months faces license suspension.

New York drivers are just like anyone else and can make mistakes. If this happens and a person is ticketed, he or she has the right to defend against the charges and pursue the reduction or dismissal of a moving violation.

Source: Your News Now, "Understanding New York's Move Over Law," Lauren Fix, July 16, 2013