You might not know the exact details of New York’s move-over law. However, not knowing about the law does not excuse you from it, and you can face legal consequences for not following it.

What exactly is the move-over law?

In most states, the move-over law means that when you see the flashing lights of an emergency vehicle, such as a police patrol car, ambulance or fire engine, then you must begin to slow down and pull over to the nearest lane. This allows emergency vehicles to quickly get to their destination and administer aid to those in need.

Revisions to the law in New York

Originally, the Ambrose-Searles Move Over Act of 2012 was enacted to protect emergency personal from being injured as well as to cut the time it took for them to get to their destination. The act also instructed drivers on how to move over when they see an emergency vehicle’s lights. In 2016, the act was upgraded to include other types of vehicles, including construction crews, garbage trucks and recycling trucks. The act also outlined the legal consequences if a citizen refuses or forgets to move over.

Why people don’t move over

In many cases, drivers report not moving over because of two things. These included panicking and not reacting fast enough or being too busy on the phone to notice the lights or sounds of emergency vehicles.

Driver’s license consequences

One of the many things that can happen if you don’t move over is having points placed on your driver’s license. Failure to yield the right of way can place over three points on your license. If multiple points are added simultaneously, you may even end up losing your right to drive.

If you were stopped and ticketed for violating this law, you may want to seek legal counsel to determine the best course of action for your case. You might be able to avoid having points added to your driver’s license.