Every year, police officers and first responders are injured while responding to emergencies on roadways. When officers stop a driver or first responders help a victim after a crash, it’s possible for another vehicle to strike them.
To protect emergency workers performing their duties on roadways, Texas requires all drivers to follow the Texas Move Over or Slow Down Law.
What’s the Move over or Slow Down Law in Texas?
The Move Over or Slow Down Law in Texas was enacted in 2003 to protect emergency personnel responding to accidents on Texas highways. Under this law, if a driver sees a road worker’s vehicle turn on its emergency lights while parked on the side of the road, he/she must move to a different lane to give it more room.
Also, when approaching an accident, a driver must reduce speed to at least 20 miles per hour below the posted speed limit.
Which Emergency Workers Are Protected by the Move over or Slow Down Law in Texas?
The Move Over or Slow Down Law has been expanded over the years to provide the same protection to road workers including:
- Police officers
- Tow truck drivers
- Emergency first responders
- Recycling, composting and garbage workers
- Utility workers, such as power line crews.
- Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) employees
What’s the Penalty for Violating the Move over Law in Texas?
If a driver fails to comply with the measures outlined in the Texas Move Over or Slow Down Law, he/she may be subject to the following penalties:
- If the driver fails to pull over or slow down but the violation doesn’t result in an accident, he/she could face a fine of up to $200.
- If the driver violates the law and causes property damage, he/she could face a fine of up to $500.
- If the violation results in an accident and injury to protected workers, the driver could receive a Class B misdemeanor charge. This carries a fine of up to $2,000 and/or jail time.
What Should You Do If You’re Injured Due to a Violation of the Move over Law in Texas?
If you’re an emergency worker, you deserve protection while performing your duties. If a driver violates the Texas Move Over or Slow Down Law and injures you, you may be able to claim financial compensation. Contact your trusted personal injury lawyer immediately for more information.
At the Law Offices of George Salinas, we’ll help you, no matter your immigration status. Schedule your free and confidential consultation. Call us now!
If you found this article interesting, read more here: