Move over or slow down? Don’t bet on it.

Missouri law (section 304.022.2) requires that drivers–on roads with two or more lanes in each direction–upon approaching a stopped emergency vehicle with flashing lights shall move over into a lane away from the emergency vehicle. The exception is where changing lanes is unsafe or impossible; then the driver must slow down.

This is the law as written and as enforced by the Missouri Highway patrol. So if you can move over, but you don’t, then you get a ticket. Slowing down is not an option–IF you could have moved over.

Defense attorneys, however, are challenging those tickets because of these brilliantly executed signs which have been erected on our state highways:
Move over

Imagine the driver, upon being ticketed for not moving over, complaining, “But I slowed down!”

It’s true, ignorance of the law is no excuse, but it’s a bit of a dirty trick to get bad legal advice from the highway department (I presume) and then a ticket from the highway patrol. Somebody goofed.

2 thoughts on “Move over or slow down? Don’t bet on it.

  1. char52 says:

    My husband got a ticket for not changing lanes when an officer had someone pulled over on the shoulder of the highway. We honestly have nerver heard of the move over law until now. It makes sense …I usually move over if possible… but didn’t know it was a law. Why hasn’t missouri made this law known to us. I can’t remember seeing a sign on the highways…only signs in work zones. thanks charlotte stricker,st louis,mo

  2. lilly says:

    Are you serious? MSHP has spent tons of money on the law advertising. The reason this whole law is in effect is because a trooper died due to a driver not paying attention. Which was on every news agency statewide at the time it happened. Look at every patrol car you see driving and there is likely a “move over” sticker. Ignorance is bliss i guess.

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