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13 People Hospitalized After Crash on Route 1 in…

Police Remind Maryland Motorists to 'Move Over'

State law requires slowing down, changing lanes around emergency vehicles.

A Howard County police officer, a person he had in custody and a driver who hit them were hospitalized Jan. 22 in Mt. Airy.

That was just one of the collisions that has occurred when motorists don't obey the state's "Move Over Law," which went into effect Oct. 1, 2010, requiring drivers to move over, or at least slow down, if they come across emergency vehicles.

"Clearly, we believe there is a need to boost awareness for this law," said  Superintendent Col. Marcus Brown, who mentioned several other incidents in which Maryland troopers were injured after being struck by motorists.

Brown joined emergency responders at a March 21 news conference in  to remind people about the law.

Howard County Chief of Police William McMahon also spoke, noting that motorists can show their appreciation for emergency responders through compliance with the law. In addition, he asked for the same courtesy for other workers.

"Even though the law does not cover our friends at [State Highway Administration] and public works who are out there in a very dangerous position," said McMahon, "we need...our driving community to move over for them as well."

Brown, who is designating May as Move Over Month, unveiled a new bumper sticker that will be used on police, fire and other vehicles. The sticker, supplied by the Maryland Automobile Insurance Fund (MAIF), states: "If I'm on the Shoulder, Slow Down, Move Over. It's the Law."

Traffic-related incidents were the leading cause of law enforcement fatalities over the last decade in the United States, said Kent Krabbe, MAIF executive director.

According to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, since 1999, more than 150 U.S. law enforcement officers have been killed after being struck by vehicles along America's highways.

sarah March 23, 2012 at 12:59 PM
Not only should you move over when you see police on the side of the road but really when you see anyone pulled over. If there is no one beside you, then you should move over, its sad hearing about police or tow truck drivers being killed because of being struck by a car. Stop trying to look at the cops or who ever is being pulled over and worry more about there safety and get in the other lane
Mike A. March 23, 2012 at 01:17 PM
Remember folks, it isn't just for Police, the law is for EMERGENCY VEHICLES. So figure in Fire Dept. as well. I can remember 2 seperate incidents where FD vehicles were struck (and at a moderate to high rate of speed) severely damaging a Rescue Squad and the other was a Fire Engine. The Fire Engine had a crew on board at the time! They were parked at a rescue scene. Please SLOW DOWN AND MOVE OVER and respect our Emergency Workers!


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