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Troopers increase "Move Over Law" and speed enforcement patrols

By NEWSChannel 2 Staff

New York State Police are reminding motorists to slow down when they see emergency or hazard vehicles on the side of state roads and highways.

Speed remains one of the leading causes of fatalities on our roadways, and poses a significant threat to law enforcement and emergency workers, officials said.

In an effort to reduce speed-related crashes, improve safe highway travel and protect those working alongside our roads, the New York State Police will initiate special traffic enforcement efforts from April 1 - 7, 2013.

Drivers can expect increased patrols on the roads enforcing both speed and the "Move Over Law."

The Ambrose-Searles "Move Over Law" went into effect in January of 2011 and requires drivers to exercise due care to avoid colliding with an authorized emergency or hazard vehicle which is parked, stopped or standing on the shoulder of a road or highway with its emergency lights activated. Drivers must reduce speed on all roads when encountering such vehicles, but on parkways, interstates, and other controlled access highways with multiple lanes, drivers are further required to move from the lane immediately adjacent to the emergency vehicle, unless traffic or other hazards exist to prevent doing so safely.

The Ambrose-Searles 'Move Over Law,' was named in honor of New York State Trooper Robert W. Ambrose and Onondaga County Sheriff Deputy Glenn M. Searles who were both killed in the line of duty while their patrol vehicles were stopped on the side of the road, and to honor others who have tragically lost their lives on the highways while serving the public.

In 2011, the New York State Police issued 13,692 tickets for violations of the "Move Over Law."

In 2012, the "Move Over Law" was amended to create two sections, one for emergency vehicles and another for hazard vehicles. Hazard vehicles include those with amber lights such as tow services or maintenance workers.

In 2012, troopers issued 11,792 for the section pertaining to emergency vehicles and another 343 for the section pertaining to hazard vehicles.

The New York State Police are partnering with the New York State Thruway Authority and the New York State Department of Transportation for this initiative.

Drivers can expect to see messages posted on electronic sign boards along state roadways throughout the week reminding them to "Move Over" and slow down.

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