The North Carolina Highway Patrol has announced they are increasing enforcement of the state’s “Move Over” law after two troopers were almost hit in two separate incidents, both occurring within days of each other. The “Move Over” law requires motorists to move over one lane when passing an emergency vehicle on the shoulder of the road. But many motorists fail to heed the law.
The first incident occurred on Highway 70 west near B&B Outdoor in Newport, in the morning, when a trooper pulled over a moped. According to the trooper, the driver of the moped pulled just to the side of the highway along the fog line, so he asked the driver to move further off the highway. The trooper also moved his patrol car. A Ford F-350 pickup truck, with dual wheels on the rear, drove by and the right rear truck tire grazed the patrol car’s left rear tire. Another trooper pursued and stopped the pickup truck’s driver, who said he wasn’t aware he had hit the cruiser. The driver was cited for violating the Move Over law.
The second incident occurred on Highway 70 just west at Hibbs Road in Newport where a trooper had stopped to assist a disabled motorist. As the officer was helping the driver change a flat tire, a light-colored passenger vehicle drove by so close that it struck the left front tire of the patrol car, the impact so hard it broke a tie rod on the patrol car. The vehicle drove off and because of the damage done to the patrol car, the trooper was not able to pursue.
Highway 70, Newport scene of the hit and run
The North Carolina Injury Lawyer Perspective:
In recent years, two Highway Patrol troopers have been killed and numerous law enforcement officials and emergency responders seriously injured when motorists failed to slow down or move over when passing an emergency vehicle on the shoulder of the highway. As one trooper asked, “How would you like to be standing on the side of a busy highway and have vehicles coming by at 55 and 60 mph?”
The Move Over law also includes public service vehicles with amber lights such as utility or road crew vehicles. We wrote about a tragic accident in which a tow truck driver was assisting a vehicle that had broken down and was killed instantly when a Nissan Pathfinder crashed into him.
If you’ve been seriously injured by a negligent driver, you should contact an attorney to find out what damages you may be entitled to. Our North Carolina personal injury law firm has successfully represented many clients, including one client who received $95,000 for injuries sustained when the other driver failed to yield the right of way.
To learn about what types of damages are available through a personal injury claim, take a moment to read this article which discusses the possibility of obtaining damages to compensate for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.