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NJ LAWMAKERS POISED TO EXPAND MOVE OVER LAW TO INCLUDE ANY DISABLED VEHICLE




New Jersey state lawmakers are poised to expand the State's Move Over law.


Under current law, a driver approaching a stationary emergency vehicle that is displaying flashing lights, shall approach the emergency vehicle with due caution and shall, absent any other direction by a law enforcement officer, proceed as follows:


     (1)   Make a lane change into a lane not adjacent to the authorized emergency vehicle if possible in the existing safety and traffic conditions; or


     (2)   If a lane change pursuant to paragraph (1) of subsection a. of this section would be impossible, prohibited by law or unsafe, reduce the speed of the motor vehicle to a reasonable and proper speed for the existing road and traffic conditions, which speed shall be less than the posted speed limit, and be prepared to stop.


More recently, the Move Over law was expanded to include drivers approaching a stationary tow truck that is displaying a flashing amber light, a stationary highway maintenance or emergency service vehicle that is operated by the State, an authority, or a county or municipality and displaying flashing yellow, amber, or red lights, or a stationary sanitation vehicle displaying a flashing amber warning light.


The New Jersey Assembly is set today to vote on Bill No. 5391.


This bill expands the existing Move Over law to impose conditions on drivers approaching a disabled vehicle with flashing hazard warning signal lights or utilizing road flares or reflective triangles.


The bill requires a motor vehicle driver approaching a disabled vehicle displaying these lights, road flares, or reflective triangles to either move to a lane that is not next to the disabled vehicle or, if the driver is unable to safely or legally move over, to slow down to a speed less than the posted speed limit.


While the driver will be required to move over, the driver will not be assessed motor vehicle penalty points until the third violation.


Bill A5391 is sponsored by Assemblyman Wayne P. DeAngelo.


On November 30, 2023, the bill unanimously cleared the Assembly Transportation and Independent Authorities Committee 12-0.


The twin bill, S3765, cleared the Senate Transportation Committee by a 4-0-3 vote on June 1, 2023. The bill is likely to be brought to a vote before the full Senate later this month.


Once the bill passes the full Assembly and Senate, it will head to the governor's desk.


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