New law requires drivers to give wreckers room

By: Rashi Vats Email
By: Rashi Vats Email

COLBERT, Okla. ― Provisions to a nine-year-old Oklahoma driving law have just gone into effect. Rashi Vats reports from Colbert to explain what you need to know about the new rules of the road.

Drivers usually slow down when they see the flashing lights of police, fire trucks, or EMS, but as of November 1st, Oklahoma drivers are now required to slow down for other vehicles as well.

The “Move Over Law” is not new to Oklahomans. It has been in effect since 1999, but there is a new provision just implemented this month. Now when you see a tow truck or construction crews working with lights flashing, you are required to slow down or move over into the lane farthest from them.

OHP troopers say this makes the roads safer for all drivers.

"It's good. It needs to be enacted, and I’m glad to see that we've got it for the DOT workers and for the wrecker drivers because they are out there just like we are and the DOT workers are out there more than we are, and I’m happy to see it's happening,"OHP Trooper Scott King says.

Approved by the state committee and District 21 State Representative John Carey, legislators say this provision will save lives.

"Imagine if people were zooming by your workplace by your desk, and that's how close these people are to life and death, so I think not only as citizens or lawmakers but citizens we need to be cognizant of that and the job they're doing," Rep. Carey said.

It’s a provision that Durant city manager Jim Dunegan, the writer of the original “Move Over Law,” agrees with as well.

"It probably hasn't been as well known as it should have been, but I know that I’ve always slowed down when I see emergency lights on the side of the highway. I just think it's the right thing to do,” Dunegan said.

OHP troopers say they have not written any citations under the new law yet, but say they will be on the lookout for violators.

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