Florida’s Move Over Law

The Florida Move Over Law went into effect in 2002 with a goal of reducing the amount of accidents that involve emergency officials, such as first responders and law enforcement officials. While the majority of motorists are aware of the law, some motorists aren't and this leads to accidents and violations. Orange County led the state of Florida with 32 move-over related crashes in 2016, the most recent year such data is available. Other counties with high occurrences of this type of accident are Miami-Dade County with 27 accidents and Broward County with 24 accidents.

What Is The Move Over Law?

The State of Florida is one of 43 states with a law requiring motorists to yield the right-of-way and/or provide ample space for a stopped emergency vehicle. Florida Statute § 316.126 governs the Florida Move Over law, along with the expectations of motorists and stopped emergency vehicles. These vehicles include:

  • Emergency
  • Law enforcement
  • Sanitation
  • Utility service
  • Tow trucks and wreckers

If you or a loved one have been charged with violating Florida's Move Over Law, contact a moving violation attorney at 911 Biker Law. Our personal injury law firm has an established history of contesting these citations and related charges with successful results for clients.

Two Parts Of The Move Over Law

Motorists are expected to adhere to both parts of the law. The first part requires motorists to yield the right-of-way to an approaching emergency vehicle that is using a siren and/or visible blue and red lights. This means, that motorists are required to pull over to the side of the road, generally as close to the curb as possible, until the vehicle has passed. Pedestrians are also subject to the law and expected to yield the right-of-way until the area is clear.

The second part oversees moving traffic and requires drivers to move over one lane when it’s safe to do so. If traffic flow doesn’t allow you to move over, such as when driving on a two-lane highway, drivers must slow to at least 20 miles per hour under the posted speed limit. If the limit is 20 miles per hour or less, your speed must be reduced to 5 miles per hour or less.

Penalties For Not Moving Over

Not moving over is a non-criminal traffic violation in Florida. The associated penalties vary between counties but usually include a fine which may exceed $100 and include three points added to your driving record. If convicted of this moving violation, you may also experience an increase in car insurance rates along with potentially having your drivers license suspended due to a points accumulation.

Do I Have To Move Over For Cars On The Shoulder?

Yes. An often overlooked provision to the law is its application to cars and other private vehicles stopped on the shoulder of a highway and/or interstate. The same space and speed considerations are expected in this situation as for stopped emergency vehicles.