As of July 1, 2014, Florida motorists will now be required to move over or slow down when passing utility services vehicles and sanitation vehicles. Towing trucks and law enforcement vehicles were already protected under the law.
The amended “Move Over Law” was recently passed by the Florida Legislature as part of a larger transportation bill.
Under the new law, motorists are required to:
- Approach law enforcement patrol cars, emergency vehicles, utility service vehicles, sanitation vehicles, and tow trucks/wreckers with caution when they are performing a service-related task on the roadside.
- Change lanes away from these vehicles if traveling on a multi-lane roadway and able to move over safely; or
- Slow down while maintaining a safe speed of 20 mph below posted speed limit, being careful not to impede or block the flow of traffic unless otherwise directed by a law enforcement officer.
If the law is violated, motorists can be fined and points can be added to their license.
Joe Lourenco, operations manager of Ocala Waste Pro, which handles curbside recycling for the city of Ocala and household garbage pickup in Marion and several surrounding counties, told the Ocala StarBanner he is pleased to see the amended Move Over Law.
“The change in the law is wonderful. I hope the public will be aware of it and follow it,” he said, noting that one of his driver’s trucks was rear ended and his employees have experienced several situations that had the potential for decapitation as a result of motorists not providing enough space for them on the road. “Drivers sometimes are not paying attention.”
The original Florida Law has been strongly promoted by law enforcement, with a slideshow of officers and their families viewable on the FLHSMV website, encouraging drivers to “move over.” More information on the law online at http://www.flhsmv.gov/safetytips/moveovertips.htm.