Mississippi's Move Over Law

By: Mike McDaniel
By: Mike McDaniel

For many Mississippi drivers, it's a law getting passed right up. But it's one Corporal Odis Easterling with the Highway Patrol says officers are constantly on the look out for.

"The primary reason for that law is officer safety," he says.

It's called the Move Over law, requiring you to do just that.

"It's a hazard to be out there on the side of the road anyway," Easterling points out.

The law went into effect back in 2007. When drivers on multiple lane highways approach any emergency or law enforcement vehicle with flashing lights on the roadside, they're required to move at least one lane away from that vehicle. That also goes for construction workers and utility crews. There's also the option of slowing down, but that's only if a driver is unable to change lanes.

"A lot of people think, well I couldn't move over. I've heard that before. The next thing to do is slow down. It should be natural instinct, slow down."

When the law first went into effect, Easterling says violators were often warned. But now he says there's no excuse. Not moving over can cost you about 200 bucks and tickets are being handed out across the state.

"That law is not designed to hurt anybody," he explains. "It's more or less to try to make it a little bit safer for a person to be outside of the vehicle."

For violators, dash cam video is even being used as evidence against them. Just because the officer may not be looking directly at you, the camera is constantly recording.

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  • by Other Side on Jun 6, 2012 at 02:13 PM
    Georgia and some other states' officers approach from the passenger side. Don't know if it works. But, common courtesy at its lowest form should cause people to slow, move over or both. Ashamed it had to become a law.
    • reply
      by Peabody on Jun 7, 2012 at 02:09 PM in reply to Other Side
      Agree. I was taught to move to the left lane if possible anytime I could for any vehicle on the shoulder. Passenger side approach sounds good but the officer still has to exit his/her car from the drivers side.
  • by Everette Location: Union on Jun 6, 2012 at 10:56 AM
    This is a Good law And Has been To Long Coming.Our Law Enforcement Officers Are At Enough Risk As It Is Besides getting Side Swiped By A motor Vehicle And Possibly Losing Their Life.I'm Proud of The Bill Becoming Law....
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