Move over; it’s the law

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By The Staff

Driving east on State Road 200 about 5 p.m. last Friday, motorists came upon a sheriff’s deputy who was conducting a traffic stop just west of 66th Street. The deputy had a pickup truck stopped, the truck was entirely off the road on the sidewalk and the police cruiser had two wheels on the bike lane. The flashing lights were visible from at least a half-mile away.

Nobody moved over.

I shouldn’t’ say nobody. One of us did.

Apparently people were more concerned about making the right turn on 66th than they were about the law.

It’s very simple. If you’re on a multi-lane road, such as 200, and you come upon an emergency vehicle that is conducting official business on the side of the road, you MUST move over one lane.

If you’re on a two-lane road, with nowhere to go, you MUST slow down to 20 mph below the speed limit.

Both those rules are relatively clear and easy to understand. The law has been in effect for two years now.

So why do people ignore it? It’s either ignorance or laziness.

With staffing and budget problems the way they are, it’s impractical to expect law enforcement agencies to send two squad cars to every traffic stop. Still, it might be nice if, one day, a second officer, who hears about a traffic stop on his radio, would go to the scene and wait about a half a block past the stop, pulling people over who violate this law.

This is a safety issue. Those who have relatives in law enforcement will tell you that there is more danger from traffic at a traffic stop than there is from the driver being stopped.

So please, be careful when you see those flashing lights (that includes tow trucks) on the side of the road. Move over and/or slow down. You might be avoiding making things worse at the scene, to say nothing of avoiding a traffic citation.