Home Virginia’s Move Over Law is expanding to stationary vehicles on July 1
Public Safety, Virginia

Virginia’s Move Over Law is expanding to stationary vehicles on July 1

car with hood up on side of road
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Starting on Saturday, drivers in Virginia will need to slow down and move over for stationary vehicles on Virginia’s roads, or they could face a fine of up to $250.

When it is safe to do so, drivers will need to move to the left lane when passing vehicles pulled over on roadways displaying hazard lights, warning signs or flares. Currently, the law only applies to first responders and others working along Virginia roads displaying red, blue or amber flashing lights.

AAA supported the legislation to expand Virginia’s Move Over law.

“The danger starts the moment someone stops on the roadside,” says AAA Public and Government Affairs Manager Morgan Dean. “This change to the law helps to protect them, along with our first responders, law enforcement officers, highway maintenance crew members and tow truck operators.”

According to the director of the Virginia State Police Bureau of Field Operations Lt. Col. Matt Hanley, the question Virginians need to ask is “what should I do as a responsible driver?”

“The purpose of Virginia’s ‘Move Over’ law is simple-to create a safe zone for everyone-essential workers as they carry out their duties and for the driver experiencing an emergency on the side of the road,” said Hanley.

A 2021 AAA poll of drivers in Virginia found that more than 9 out of 10 respondents said they would support a change to the Move Over law to cover stationary vehicles.

“For drivers, the message today is slow down and move over whenever you see any vehicle along the roadway,” said Dean. “For those who have to stop on the roadside, remember to turn on your hazard lights, put up your emergency reflective triangle and/or put out flares to make yourself as visible as possible to other vehicles.”

Move Over law

Under the new law, a driver on a four-lane road must proceed with caution and, if reasonable, change lanes as they pass a stationary vehicle displaying the proper warning signs.

However, if changing lanes would be unreasonable or unsafe, a driver must proceed with caution and maintain a safe speed for highway conditions.

If a driver fails to change lanes or proceed with caution, they could be charged with a traffic infraction, which carries a fine of up to $250.

Crystal Graham

Crystal Graham

Crystal Abbe Graham is the regional editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1999 graduate of Virginia Tech, she has worked for nearly 25 years as a reporter and editor for several Virginia publications, written a book, and garnered more than a dozen Virginia Press Association awards for writing and graphic design. She was the co-host of "Viewpoints," a weekly TV news show, and co-host of Virginia Tonight, a nightly TV news show. Her work on "Virginia Tonight" earned her a national Telly award for excellence in television.