ST LOUIS, Mo. (KNWA/KFTA) — The American Automobile Association is calling on Arkansas drivers to adhere to the “Move Over” law, which requires drivers to change lanes when approaching Arkansas Department of Transportation vehicles, tow trucks, law enforcement, or any emergency vehicle with flashing lights.
According to a press release by the AAA, an average of 24 emergency responders are killed after being struck by vehicles on the side of the road each year.
AAA used data from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety to determine 42% of drivers thought not changing lanes was “somewhat or not dangerous at all” to roadside workers.
Due to this behavior, they led the way for “Move Over” laws getting passed in all 50 states yet, according to the study, AAA Foundation found 23% of drivers are unaware of the Move Over law in the state where they live.
For those who are aware, about 15% report not understanding the potential consequences for violating the law.
In Arkansas, drivers who fail to give these works their space on roadsides can face misdemeanors, which carry a maximum penalty of 90 days in jail, a $500 fine, mandatory community service and suspension of a driver’s license for up to six months, the release said.
“Deaths like these can be avoided if drivers slow down and move over to give our roadside heroes room to work safely,” said AAA Spokesperson Nick Chabarria. “We can’t stress enough how important it is to pay attention so you have time to change lanes when you see AAA, an emergency responder, or simply anybody along the side of the road.”