Move it on over!

The “Move Over” law is now in effect in North Carolina. When an emergency vehicle approaches with its lights or siren on, you MUST move your vehicle to the right and allow it to pass. The law also prohibits following or parking near emergency vehicles and requires that you slow to a safe speed when passing parked emergency vehicles.

Click here to see the full statute   

Statute 20-157 - “Move Over”

20-157. Approach of police, fire department or rescue squad vehicles or ambulances; driving over fire hose or blocking fire-fighting equipment; parking, etc., near police, fire department, or rescue squad vehicle or ambulance.

Statute text

(a) Upon the approach of any police or fire department vehicle or public or private ambulance or rescue squad emergency service vehicle giving warning signal by appropriate light and by audible bell, siren or exhaust whistle, audible under normal conditions from a distance not less than 1000 feet, the driver of every other vehicle shall immediately drive the same to a position as near as possible and parallel to the right-hand edge or curb, clear of any intersection of streets or highways, and shall stop and remain in such position unless otherwise directed by a police or traffic officer until police or fire department vehicle or public or private ambulance or rescue squad emergency service vehicle shall have passed. Provided, however, this subsection shall not apply to vehicles traveling in the opposite direction of the vehicles herein enumerated when traveling on a four-lane limited access highway with a median divider dividing the highway for vehicles traveling in opposite directions, and provided further that the violation of this subsection shall not be negligence per se. Violation of this subsection is a Class 2 misdemeanor.

(b) It shall be unlawful for the driver of any vehicle other than one on official business to follow any fire apparatus traveling in response to a fire alarm closer than one block or to drive into or park such vehicle within one block where fire apparatus has stopped in answer to a fire alarm.

(c) Outside of the corporate limits of any city or town it shall be unlawful for the driver of any vehicle other than one on official business to follow any fire apparatus traveling in response to a fire alarm closer than 400 feet or to drive into or park such vehicle within a space of 400 feet from where fire apparatus has stopped in answer to a fire alarm.

(d) It shall be unlawful to drive a motor vehicle over a fire hose or any other equipment that is being used at a fire at any time, or to block a fire-fighting apparatus or any other equipment from its source of supply regardless of its distance from the fire.

(e) It shall be unlawful for the driver of a vehicle, other than one on official business, to park and leave standing such vehicle within 100 feet of police or fire department vehicles, public or private ambulances, or rescue squad emergency vehicles which are engaged in the investigation of an accident or engaged in rendering assistance to victims of such accident.

(f) When an authorized emergency vehicle as described in subsection (a) of this section is parked or standing within 12 feet of a roadway and is giving a warning signal by appropriate light, the driver of every other approaching vehicle shall, as soon as it is safe and when not otherwise directed by an individual lawfully directing traffic, do one of the following:

(1) Move the vehicle into a lane that is not the lane nearest the parked or standing authorized emergency vehicle and continue traveling in that lane until safely clear of the authorized emergency vehicle. This paragraph applies only if the roadway has at least two lanes for traffic proceeding in the direction of the approaching vehicle and if the approaching vehicle may change lanes safely and without interfering with any vehicular traffic.

(2) Slow the vehicle, maintaining a safe speed for traffic conditions, and operate the vehicle at a reduced speed until completely past the authorized emergency vehicle. This paragraph applies only if the roadway has only one lane for traffic proceeding in the direction of the approaching vehicle or if the approaching vehicle may not change lanes safely and without interfering with any vehicular traffic.

Violation of this subsection shall not be negligence per se.


 

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